POSTED DAE : Sept. 8, 2015
Unseeded Velavan Senthilkumar moved into the semi-final on the opening day in the men’s singles event of the squash competitions of the Commonwealth Youth Games being held in Samoa on Monday.
The Tamil Nadu boy, an emerging pupil of the Indian squash academy in Chennai, made short work of Jason Michale Samuel Doyle of St Vincent and Grenadines 11-4, 11-4, 11-6 in the first round. In the quarterfinal next, playing ¾ seed Luke jones of New Zealand, the unseeded Indian showed his mettle with an 3-1 effort, an upset win. According to Maj Maniam, the Coach, Velavan played outstanding and then briefly dropped guard to lose the initial steam. But varying his pace and keeping the rallies long, the Indian had his opponent run out of stamina to script a wonderful 12-10, 3-11, 11-6, 11-5 win to make it to the semi-final where he faces the top seed Malaysian Eain Yow Ng.
However it was mixed fortune for India with the women’s representative Harshit Jawanda falling by the way side after the first round. Seeded ¾ the Indian defeated Susanna Armano in straight games 11-2 . 11-5, 11-8. However in the next round luck failed her against Pakistan’s Sadia Gul. As Maj Maniam put it, “it was a keenly contested match, a very physical one too, considering Sadia is very aggressive on court. The Pakistan player took advantage of the young and inexperienced mind of Harshit. The Indian played out of her skin, one of the better games that I have seen her play.” The Pakistani won 11-7, 12-14, 8-11, 9-11.