Pondicherry: Divyansh Srivastava of Uttar Pradesh got it right in a long time despite his potential to make it big. Today was his day, and cashing in on Jash Modi’s impatience, Divyansh defeated him 4-3 to win the Youth Boys Under-17 title in the UTT National Ranking Championships (South Zone) at the Rajiv Gandhi Indoor Stadium here.
Kavyashree Baskar of Tamil Nadu denied Suhana Saini the crown in the Youth Girls Under-17, beating the Haryana girl 4-1.
Divyansh had to labour for the gold, though he led 2-1. Credit must also go to the Maharashtra boy whose never-say-die attitude kept him in the match until the end. The onus was on the UP boy who let Jash claw his way back, taking the issue to the decider. But Divyansh, realising the responsibility, played the crucial game with authority and sealed his opponent’s fate.
Like Divyansh, Kavyashree, too, did not start well. Suhana, with the first-game advantage, failed to mount pressure as the tall Tamil Nadu girl went from strength to strength. Surprisingly, Suhana lacked the fighting spirit she is known for this evening. Incidentally, this is the first time in several tournaments that the Haryana girl will return home without a gold medal.
In the Youth Boys, Jash Modi’s game was in complete disarray as the Maharashtra boy began poorly, losing the first two games to Bodhisatwa Chaudhury of Bengal. But in the third, he was back on track. He won the extended game after saving five-game points and with renewed confidence levelled the score. But several unforced errors saw him losing track. He, however, managed to pull it off in the last two games. Meanwhile, top-seed Ankur Bhattacharjee, the winner of the Dehradun-leg, went 1-4 down to the assertive Divyansh Srivastava.
In the quarterfinal, Divyansh Srivastava of Uttar Pradesh got stretched fully. His encounter with a determined Khelendrajit Yengkhom turned tough as the Manipuri boy was up to the task against the UP lad. Despite taking the first game, Divyansh was soon down 1-2. Yet, he came back nicely to win the fourth game 12-10. Soon after, he wrapped up the match 4-3.
Kavyashree Baskar of Tamil Nadu went into a tangle in her semifinal against Sneha Bhowmick of West Bengal. The opening for Kavyashree was equally poor, losing both extended games. However, the tall TN girl launched her attack in the nick of time to win the next four games to enter the final.
In the Girls quarterfinals, top-seed Suhana Saini was forced to drop two games before winning the match 4-2 against Risha Mirchandani of Maharashtra. The latter led 2-1 but Suhana upped the ante in the last three to romp home winners.
Youth Boys U-17 Singles: Final: Divyansh Srivastava (UP) bt Jash Modi (Mah) 8-11, 11-6, 11-4, 6-11, 11-9, 7-11, 11-8.
Semifinals: Jash Modi bt Bodhisatwa Chaudhury (Ben) 9-11, 8-11, 18-16, 11-7, 7-11, 11-8, 11-8; Divyansh Srivastava bt Ankur Bhattacharjee (Ben) 11-3, 11-8, 9-11, 11-8, 11-9.
Quarterfinals: Divyansh Srivastava bt K. Yengkhom (Man) 11-9, 6-11, 7-11, 12-10, 11-7, 7-11, 13-11; Jash Modi bt Shankhadip Das (Ben) 11-2, 11-9, 11-2, 7-11, 11-9; Bodhisatwa Chaudhary bt Sarth Mishra (UP) 11-4, 3-11, 11-8, 11-9, 9-11, 12-10; Ankur Bhattacharjee bt Aadarsh Om Chetri (Del) 11-9, 13-11, 11-7, 11-9.
Youth Girls U-17 Singles: Final: Kavyashree Baskar (TTTA) bt Suhana Saini (Har) 1-11, 11-6, 11-8, 11-7, 11-8.
Semifinals: Kavyashree Baskar bt Sneha Bhowmick (Ben) 11-13, 12-14, 11-3, 11-8, 11-8, 11-5; Suhana Saini bt Lakshita Narang (Del) 12-10, 11-8, 11-5, 12-10.
Quarterfinals: Suhana Saini bt Risha Mirchandani (Mah) 9-11, 11-7, 10-12, 11-8, 11-6, 11-9; Kavyashree Baskar bt Prithoki Chakraborti (Har) 12-10, 17-15, 11-5, 11-5; Sneha Bhowmick bt Riddhima Kapoor (Del) 11-8, 11-8, 11-8, 11-7; Lakshita Narang bt Kaashvi Gupta (Del) 11-9, 11-9, 11-5, 11-9.