India beats Pakistan to win Gold at Asian Boys Championship

Indian boys beat Pakistan to win gold at Asian Team squash

India win gold at Asian Team Squash

The Indian junior boys team created history when they downed archrivals and defending title holders Pakistan India  2-1 in the 15th Asian Junior Team Championships held in Colombo, Sri Lanka to win this prestigious title for the first time in Indian squash history since the inception of the Asian Championships in 1983.

Ramit Tandon bt Danish Atlas Khan 11/7, 6/11, 11/9, 8/11, 11/9, Abhishek Pradhan lost to Nasir Iqbal 4/11, 7/11, 3/11, Mahesh Mangaonkar bt Sadam Ul Haq11/7, 11/2, 11/6 Read more of this post

World Junior Squash Championships – Day1

A good start to Day 1 for the Indian contingent at the 15th World Junior Squash Championships being held at Zurich, Switzerland. Read more of this post

Pioneer Junior Open

Mahesh Mangaokar reached the quarters, Shravan Kaul reached the prequarters, Aditya Jagtap, Rishi Jalan lost in the earlier rounds.

British Junior Squash Open Day3

Mahesh Mangaonkar, the only Indian boy playing in the quarterfinals at the
British Junior Open, went down fighting to Pakistan’s Nematullah Khan in
straight games. It seemed a hard morning match had taken its toll on Mahesh
as he was unable to pull through. Earlier in the day Mahesh defeated
Egyptian Ahmed Abdel Latif 4-9, 2-9, 9-3, 9-2, 9-4 in a 45 min duel to move
to the quarterfinal. Mahesh came back from two games down, hitting great
lengths and delightful drops, making Ahmed scamper all around the court and
forcing him to commit errors. ‘So near yet so far’ was the feeling in the
Indian camp after the boys U15 round of 16 matches.

Ravi Dixit played good squash against Egyptian Mohd El Sherbeny but was
unable to close the match despite leading 8-6 in the fifth game. Ravi
looked in control throughout the match but made unforced errors at crucial
moments.  Ramit Tandon, playing the higher ranked Charles Sharpes from
England, was 8-2 up with the match tied at one game apiece. Charles hit his
way out of trouble with the help of four rolling nicks and three perfect
drives. In the fourth Ramit clawed back from 0-6 to take the lead 7-6, but
unfortunately it was just one of those days for the Indians and he too
could not convert his lead. Aditya Jagtap went down fighting to top seeded
Amr Khalid Khalifa.

It was a good day for the Indian girls, with all moving into the top 16
baring an ill Shria Khatri. Aparajitha, Anaka and Sachika won easily,
however Saumya and Ankita had to contend with five-game duels. Read more of this post

British Junior Squash Open Day2

Ramit Tandon came up with his best squash in the past few months to defeat Malaysia’s Cheong Kah Wah in an exhilarating 5-game, 65 minutes encounter. This victory is sweet revenge for 14-year old Ramit, who had lost to Cheong in straight games last week in at the Scottish Open and also at the Asian Junior Individual Championship in June 2006.

Losing the first game 6-9, Ramit came back strongly to win the second. Although the game was close Ramit played some blistering nicks on his drops and volley drops, looking very confident and for the first time keeping Wah behind him. Wah regrouped and kept the pressure to win the third in quick time, and Ramit had to pull out all his resources to retrieve Wah’s shots to the front before winning the fourth 9-3. A tense fifth looked on the cards, but Ramit raced to a 6-0 lead and Cheong caved in. The final score was 6-9, 9-7, 1-9, 9-3, 9-1.

Joining Ramit in the top 16, were Ravi Dixit and Aditya Jagtap who defeated England’s Robert Downer 9-4, 9-1, 9-2 and Pakistan’s Arbab Dilawar 9-5, 9-1, 9-6. Cyril Kuhn also had a 5-game victory in the Boys U17 against Egypt’s Omar Magdy Ghanem, winning 7-9, 9-5, 9-2, 7-9, 9-7. Mahesh Mangaonkar beat Jordanian Ahmad Al Saraj  5-9, 9-0, 9-0, 9-5 in the Boys U13.

The only disappointment of the day was Dipika Pallikal losing to Japan’s Misaki Kobayashi in the round of 16. Dipika, playing her second match of the day, looked in terrific form when she won her first two games comprehensively. Her short kills on both flanks were lethal and Misaki had no answer. At 8-6 match ball in the third it looked like it was all over for Misaki who staged a remarkable comeback. Moving Dipika to the front of the court with her boasts and counter drops, she often caught Dipika on the wrong foot. Misaki continued to move Dipika to all corners and had her frustrated as she completed a remarkable 4-9, 4-9, 10-8, 9-1, 9-1 recovery.

The girls under 13 start tomorrow with all five Indian girls playing their opening matches.

Mahesh Mangaokar, Ravi Dixit win Scottish Squash Jr Open

Ravi Dixit had another 80-odd minute battle before he could claim his maiden European title here in Edinburgh at the Heriot–Watt University Squash Centre. Ravi played flawless squash against Malaysia’s Cheong Kah Wah in the first two games to win both comfortably. The third was a much closer affair with both players hitting very tight length and picking up all shots exceedingly well. Ravi served for the match twice at 8-6 but was unable to convert as Wah took it 10-8.
The Malaysian came out strong in the fourth, hitting some brilliant winners and rushed to an 8-1 lead in a single hand. Ravi managed to claw six points back with some effective short kills but ultimately lost the game. The fifth was a very close tussle with both players going neck and neck, Ravi seemed to be fitter but Wah ran down everything. At 6-6, Ravi hit a back hand drop into the nick and a forehand drive clinger on the next rally to earn another match point, 8-6.  Wah came back with an amazing volley nick, but Ravi managed to pull it back again and won it this time with a forehand drive the Malaysian couldn’t return.
This maiden international victory was very special for National Champion Ravi, who shifted his base from Dhampur to the ICL Squash Academy in Chennai a year ago. “I have trained so hard to win an international event and I have done it!!’ He thanked the SRFI, his coaches at the ICL Academy and the Delhi Squash Association for all their support and effort and though exhausted, promised to give it his best at the British Junior starting on 2nd January.
There was more joy for the Indian contingent  as top seeded Mahesh Mangaonkar lifted the Boys U13 crown. Mahesh used all his experience to win the first game from 7-5 down. 11 year old American Dylan Murray ran for every ball, putting a lot of pressure of Mahesh, and played his heart out in the third, forcing Mahesh to make many unforced errors. Another close game in the fourth but Mahesh stepped on the pace and won it 9-7 to claim his sixth international junior title.

Saumya Karki was unable to make it a hat trick for the Indians, her Egyptian opponent Manat Allah Naser was very consistent and played well to defeat Saumya in straight games. Aparajitha Balamurukan defeated Sachika Balvani in straight games to win the all-Indian Girls U13 3rd/4th playoff. Read more of this post

Ravi, Mahesh & Saumya in Scottish Final

Ravi Dixit playing his first European event reached ,the finals at the Scottish Junior Open played at the Heriot – Watt University in Edinburgh in a dramatic 5-game tussle. Down two games he came up trumps by sheer grit in his match against Mexico’s Milles Zarazua R which lasted well over an hour. Ravi played some outstanding drops throughout the match which were retrieved by his opponent, but Ravi proved the fitter and won the deciding game. Earlier in the day Ravi defeated Allaa Radwan of Egypt 10-9, 9-1, 9-1 in 25 minutes.
Top seeded Mahesh charged into the final of the Boys U13. In his semi final encounter he defeated Joshua Sekhar of Canada 9-3, 9-2, 10-8 in 30 minutes. Having reached the finals two years ago in the under 11 category Mahesh will play Dylan Murray of the USA, which will certainly be a close encounter
Saumya Karki defeated country mate Aparajitha Balamurukan to enter the Girls U13 final. Read more of this post

Scottish Junior Open

Scottish open squash Indian contingent 2006Every year promising junior squash players all over the world especially from India, Egypt, Malaysia, Pakistan make their way to UK for the British and Scottish Junior Squash Open.  A few years ago, ICL Academy trainees Saurav Ghosal and Joshna Chinappa won the British Open Boys and Girls title, which signaled our emergence as a squash power on the junior circuit. While they have moved into the senior ranks and are currently climbing up the senior ladder, their mantle has been passed on to a number of promising juniors.

Last year at the Scottish Open, Anaka Alankamony won the girls under 13 title while Sachika Balvani (under 13), Surbhi Misra (under 17) and Abhishek Pradhan (under 13) finished as runners up. Click here for this years results Read more of this post

British and Scottish Junior Squash

Over the years our kids have done well at the Scottish and British Open. I expect a few titles and strong finishes from this year’s contingent too.

Powerplaysports British Junior Open, 2-6 Jan 2007, Sheffield
Mahesh  Mangaonkar, Rishi Tandon, Shravan Kaul BU13
Aditya Jagtap, Akshay Deepak, Ravi Dixit,  Ramit Tandon BU15
Cyril Kuhn, Karan Malik, Suneesh Kaul BU17
Anaka Alankamony, Aparajitha Balamurukan, Sachika Balvani, Saumya Karki,  Shria Kathri GU13
Ankita Sharma GU15
Dipika  Pallikal, Surbhi Misra GU17
Scottish Junior Open, 27-30 Dec 2006, Edinburgh
Mahesh Mangaonkar, Rahil Fazelbhoy, Rishi Tandon, Shravan Kaul BU13
Ravi Dixit, Ramit Tandon, Akshay Deepak BU15
Cyril Kuhn, Karan Malik, Suneesh Kaul BU17
Saumya Karki, Aparajitha Balamurukan, Shria Khatri, Anaka Alankamony, Sachika Balvani GU13
Ankita Sharma GU15
Surbhi Misra GU17

Bombay Gymkhana Maharashtra State Open Squash Finals

Gaurav Nandrajog and Mandy Kennedy win HSBC Maharashtra SquashICL Academy’s Gaurav Nandrajog came from behind to beat compatriate Harinderpal Singh 3-2 and win the men event at the HSBC 31st Maharashtra State Open Squash Championships  held at the Bombay Gymkhana, Mumbai. Gaurav beat Harinder 2-9 7-9 10-8 9-0 9-2 in a match lasting over an hour.  Women: Mandy Kennedy (England) bt Shivangi Paranjpe (Mah) 7-9, 9-4, 9-6, 9-4. Boys U-19: Sandeep Jangra (Mah) bt Vikram Malhotra (Mah) 9-1, 9-7, 7-9, 9-4. Boys U-17: Vikram Malhotra (Mah) bt Cyril Kuhn 9-0, 9-2, 9-2. Boys U-15: Aadit Zaveri (Mah) bt Abhishek Pradhan (Mah) 9-0, 9-3, 9-0. Boys U-13: Mahesh Mangaonkar (Mah) bt Shashi Pandey (Jindal) 9-3, 9-1, 9-2. Boys U-11: Raghav Mehrotra (Mah) bt Yohan Pandole (Mah) 9-3, 9-7, 9-5. Girls U-19: Shivangi Paranjpe (Mah) bt Madhura Paranjpe (Mah) 9-1, 9-1, 9-1. Girls U-17: Shaheda Madraswala (Mah) bt Namrata Purohit (Mah) 9-1, 9-7, 9-5. Girls U-15: Ankita Sharma (Mah) bt Soumya Karki (Mah) 6-9, 5-9, 9-6, 9-4, 9-1. Girls U-13: Soumya Karki (Jindal) bt Sachika Balvani (Mah) 9-5, 2-9, 9-6, 10-9. U-9: Rajat Agarwal (Mah) bt Sandeep Paswan (Jindal) 9-6, 9-2, 9-3. Over-35: Manish Chotrani (Mah) bt Jehangir Surti (Mah) 9-0, 9-0, 9-0. Over-45: Chandrakant Pawar (Mah) bt Anant More (Mah ) 9-4, 9-5, 4-9, 10-8. Over-55: Kishanlal Passi (Mah) bt Haresh Melwani (Mah)9-6, 9-1, 9-4. Professionals: Dalip Tripathi bt Mahesh Verma (Mah) 9-1, 9-2, 9-1