Prajnesh Gunneswaran’s charge at Parma ends in quarter-finals

The Indian tennis player and his partner Kamil Majchrzak lost in straight sets in the doubles quarter-final of the Italian clay court tournament.

By Utathya Nag ·

India’s Prajnesh Gunneswaran and his Polish partner Kamil Majchrzak bowed out of the ATP 125 Challenger in Parma, Italy after losing in their doubles quarter-finals on Thursday.

The Indo-Polish duo went down in straight sets - 6-4, 6-1 - to Uruguay’s Ariel Behar and Ecuador’s Gonzalo Escobar.

Prajnesh Gunneswaran, who reached the second round of the French Open qualifiers last month, was the second Indian to get knocked out of the tournament in Italy after Sumit Nagal’s exit from the singles in the round of 16.

In the doubles quarter-finals, the early momentum seemed to be in the South American pair’s favour as they broke Majchrzak’s serve in the first game of the first set and raced to a 2-0 lead.

Gunneswaran responded with some powerful serves in the third game and the tide seemed to have turned as the Indo-Polish duo broke their opponents in the next game to level the first set up at 2-2.

Prajnesh Gunneswaran lost in the doubles quarter-finals at the ATP 125 Challenger in Parma.

The comeback trail, however, was cut short as Behar and Escobar broke Majchrzak yet again in the fifth game and proceeded to hold their next three serves to wrap the first set up 6-4.

The second set began on a similar note to the first, with the Uruguayan-Ecuadorian duo breaking Gunneswaran’s serve in the first game.

Gunneswaran-Majchrzak held their serve in game three, but that proved to be the last one the Indo-Polish duo won. The South American pair then upped the ante, wrapping the second set up in quick time by a 6-1 margin.

N Sriram Balaji in semi-finals at Barcelona

There was good news for Indian tennis fans from Barcelona, however, as N Sriram Balaji, along with Swiss partner Luca Margaroli progressed to the doubles semi-finals at the Sánchez-Casal Mapfre Cup ATP Challenger tennis event.

The Indo-Swiss duo eased past the Spanish team of Mario Vilella Martínez and Sergio Martos Gornes 6-3, 6-4 in the Barcelona Challenger’s quarter-final round.

Balaji and Margaroli, the doubles third seeds in the tournament, will face USA’s Alex Lawson and Finland’s Harri Heliövaara for a place in the final.