Indore (Madhya Pradesh): Ankur Bhattacharjee from West Bengal will take on Divyansh Srivastava of Uttar Pradesh in the Youth Boys final of the Khelo India Youth Games on the third day at the Abhay Prashal here tomorrow.
In the semi-finals, No. 2 seed Ankur and top-seed Divyansh scored an identical 4-0 victory over their rivals, Aadarsh Om Chhetri of Delhi and Jash Modi of Maharashtra.
Taneesha Kotecha of Maharashtra, following a nervy 4-3 win over Prithoki Chakraborty, will cross swords with Lakshita Narang of Delhi, who downed Yashaswini Ghorpade 4-0 in the Youth Girls final.
Ankur didn't need a second invitation after closing out Aadarsh in the first two games. He completed the job methodically with little resistance from the Delhi boy.
Divyansh Srivastava, playing a percentage game, scored an emphatic 4-0 triumph over Jash Modi of Maharashtra. The UP boy, who played a passive game during the league phase, raised his play to several notches in the first semi-final. Except for the first game, where he and Jash went neck and neck and deuced, the other games belonged to Divyansh.
With complete control and good shot selections, he outwitted Jash. An attacking player to the core, the Maharashtra lad was found wanting on the day and wilted under pressure.
Jash Modi was in trouble when Sarth Mishra from UP pulled ahead of his rival in the fifth game on extended points. With just a game away from his semi-final berth, the match seemed to head in one direction. But Jash changed the course, rallying in the sixth. The game saw excellent long rallies and some sharp points going his way.
With momentum on his side, the Maharashtra boy surged into a sizable lead and maintained it until Sarth closed in. However, Jash claimed the last two crucial points with a crisp return and one down the line to secure his berth.
In the other quarterfinals, Divyansh Srivastava beat Manipur's Khelendrajit 4-2, as did Aadarsh Om Chhetri when he downed Praneet Bhaskar of West Bengal and Ankur Bhattacharjee against state-mate from West Bengal, Soumyadeep Sarkar.
Divyansh trailed 0-2 before picking himself up and hitting a nice rhythm to finish it off, whereas Praneet squandered his 2-1 lead to let Aadarsh claw his way back, but Aankur led 2-0 and 3-1 before allowing Soumyadeep to pull one back. Finally, Ankur ended his agony, taking the sixth game and entering the semis.
Prithoki should have taken the fourth game to go 3-1 up but goofed it at the deuce. With Taneesha clinching the last two points, it restored sanity to the first semi-final and promised a good fight. But she made amends in the fourth to win it 13-11 and was comfortably placed at that stage, or so one thought.
The Maharashtra girl proved everyone wrong and changed her strategy, slowing down things. It paved the way for her to win the sixth before going all out in the decider. Though she won it with a minimal margin, her attacks through the flanks paid off.
But Lakishita Narang did not have any such problem. Taking centre stage from the word go, she kept second-seed Yashaswini Ghorpade of Karnataka stuck to the back foot. Never able to shake off the tentacles she was in, the Karnataka girl couldn't repeat her quarterfinals performance against Suhana.
Pritha Vartikar, hogging the limelight in the last couple of days, failed to sustain her form and found herself on the losing side when Prithoki Chakraborti of Haryana played superbly to enter the semi-finals of the Youth Girls quarterfinals.
Pritha was not in her element, and taking advantage of it, Prithoki found her shots, especially the forehands, clean and precise. The Pune girl, who led 3-2, made several unforced errors in her anxiety to rush with the shots. The negative points helped her opponent as she levelled before winning the decider in style.
Risha Mirchandani was guilty of not upping the ante when she levelled the score 2-2 against Lakshita Narang. The let-off helped the Delhi girl, who seized the opportunity and finished well.
But Yashaswini Ghorpade did the unimaginable, beating the stuffing out of Haryana's Suhana Saini. The Karnataka girl sent Suhana out of medal contention. Yashaswini was in a different zone today and exhibited her skills with excellent forehands and exploited the angles to her advantage without brooking any worthy challenges
Semi-finals: Divyansh Srivastava (UP) bt Jash Modi (Mah) 12-10, 11-2, 11-5, 11-2; Ankur Bhattacharjee (WB) bt Aadarsh Om Chhetri (Delhi) 11-7, 11-7, 11-9, 11-8.
Quarterfinals: Divyansh Srivastava bt Khelendrajit Yengkhom (Man) 7-11, 8-11, 11-6, 11-8, 11-4, 11-8; Jash Modi bt Sarth Mishra (UP) 7-11, 11-6, 18-20, 11-1, 10-12, 11-9, 11-8; Aadarsh Om Chhetri bt Praneet Bhaskar (WB) 6-11, 11-8, 11-7, 8-11, 14-12, 11-7; Ankur Bhattacharjee bt Soumyadeep Sarkar (WB) 11-4, 11-5, 9-11, 11-7, 9-11, 11-5.
Semi-finals: Taneesha Kotecha (Mah) bt Prithoki Chakraborty (Har) 12-10, 6-11, 5-11, 12-10, 11-13, 11-8, 11-9; Lakshita Narang (Del) bt Yashaswini Ghorpade (Kar) 11-7, 11-9, 11-6, 11-7.
Quarterfinals: Prithoki Chakraborty bt Pritha Vartikar (Mah) 8-11, 11-8, 8-11, 11-7, 9-11, 11-7, 11-8; Taneesha Kotecha bt Nehal Venkatasamy (TN) 11-6, 11-3, 11-3, 11-6; Lakshita Narang bt Risha Mirchandani (Mah) 11-9, 11-9, 10-12, 6-11, 11-7, 11-7; Yashaswini Ghorpade bt Suhana Saini (Har) 11-6, 11-7, 11-4, 7-11, 11-7.
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