Vijayant Malik missed out on the chance to win the title as he lost to Saketh Myneni,6-2,1-6,4-6,in the final of the $ 15,000 ITF men’s futures tennis tournament at the CLTA Stadium on Saturday. Had he won,Chandigarh would have witnessed another city player win the title for the second year running. Sanam Singh had won the title last year. With the anticipation growing,the spectators came in large number to cheer for Vijayant,a former CHART trainee,after Sanam Singh,one of the favourites to win the title,pulled out of the tournament owing to a wrist injury.
After a morale-boosting victory against top seed Yuki Bhambri in the quarterfinals,and the ouster of other higher seeded players like Vishnu Vardhan,Sriram Balaji from the tournament,Vijayant was expected to give the local crowd something to cheer about. Amid the raucous cheering from the crowd,Vijayant got off to a positive start. He took an early service breakthrough to win the first set,6-3. Saketh was error-prone in the first set,making several double faults that allowed Vijayant to settle down.
However,the fifth seed Saketh bounced back in the second set and broke Vijayants service three times to win the set,6-1. Saketh began hitting the ball well and fired some aces to tighten the noose around Vijayant’s neck.
In the final set,Vijayant had a good start and broke Sakeths serve in the second game. However,Saketh played some aggressive tennis and indulged Vijayant in long rallies. He broke Vijayants serve to make it even. After that he took a commanding 5-3 lead. Vijayant held his serve to make it 4-5,but Saketh continued to press hard and won the game to take the title.