3 Indian’s in Finals

Men’s semi-finals:
[1] Saurav Ghosal (IND) bt [3] Ryan Cuskelly (AUS) 10-12, 5-11, 11-5, 11-9, 11-7 (84m)
[2] Ritwik Bhattacharya (IND) bt [4] Mohd Ali Anwar Reda (EGY) 10-12, 7-11, 12-10, 11-7, 11-8 (73m)

Women’s semi-finals:
[5] Dipika Pallikal (IND) bt [3] Orla Noom (NED) 10-8, 7-9, 9-5, 9-1 (49m)
[4] Annie Au (HKG) bt [2] Joshna Chinappa (IND) 10-9, 9-1, 5-9, 10-9 (67m)

The dream run of Indian teenager Dipika Pallikal continued at the ICL Chennai Open when the 16-year-old scored her second successive upset in the WISPA World Tour squash event at the ICL Squash Academy in Chennai, India, to reach her maiden Tour final.

Playing with confidence, fifth seed Pallikal took on third seed Orla Noom in the semi-final – and won crucial points to take the advantage over her higher-ranked Dutch opponent.  Although Noom levelled the match at one-all, Pallikal played an 18-minute game to win the crucial third – then clinched the fourth convincingly to earn her breakthrough 10-8, 7-9, 9-5, 9-1 win in 49 minutes.

Hong Kong teenager Annie Au put paid to an all-Indian women’s final by battling to a 10-9, 9-1, 5-9, 10-9 upset over Joshna Chinappa, the No2 seed from Chennai, in 67 minutes.  The 19-year-old is celebrating her third Tour final – but her first this year.

In the semi-finals of the men’s $10,000 PSA Tour event, Australian Ryan Cuskelly had Indian favourite Saurav Ghosal worried in the first two games as he kept pace and answered everything the defending champion from India threw at him.

But top seed Ghosal fought back from two games down to level the match at two-all.  It was a gutsy effort from both players – but Ghosal ultimately prevailed in the marathon 84-minute duel to record a 10-12, 5-11, 11-5, 11-9, 11-7 win, and his fifth appearance in a Tour final.

In the other semi-final, second-seeded Indian Ritwik Bhattacharya also had to come back from two games down to beat Egypt’s fourth seed Mohd Ali Anwar Reda 10-12, 7-11, 12-10, 11-7, 11-8 in 73 minutes. 

Bhattacharya, the 2005 and 2006 Chennai Open champion, is celebrating his 11th PSA Tour final – but, like Ghosal, his first this year.

Issued by Howard Harding.


About Cyrus Poncha
I was born and lived in Bombay before moving to Chennai in 2001 to coach the Indian national squash team....what a journey its been!!

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