Ankita Raina’s bid to qualify for a Grand Slam singles main draw again failed when she lost in the final round of the Australian Open qualifying event to Serbian Olga Danilovic on Wednesday. In the women’s singles qualifier in Dubai, Ankita lost the third and final round 2-6 6-3 1-6 to her Serbian rival in about two hours. Unable to score points on his first serve that hurt Ankita. Ankita said that his opponent came out with his best game.
Ankita told PTI language, “It was good tennis for both of us, at the top level from the first game. She was serving very well and she was able to win free points with her points.”
“In the second set I started reading him well and I started making better counter returns, which benefited me at the beginning of all the points. At the beginning of the third set he started serving well again and got some quick points. Won where she won. Gained a 3–0 lead. She was able to increase her speed in strokes and serve as well. ”
Ankita said that despite being 1–5 behind in Decider, she “did not give up until the last point.”
“I still hoped that I could come back because I had left everything there. I am proud of the fighting spirit I have found there today,” he said.
This was the Indian’s sixth attempt to qualify for a competition on the grand stage. However, Ankita is still hoping to make the main draw as the organizers decide to pick players who lost in the final round in Melbourne for a ‘lucky loser’ entry in case of a comeback.
“They (the organizers) are taking me to Melbourne and, given the COVID-19 situation, can make a withdrawal. I am seventh in the queue. I am still hopeful,” she said.
If she does not do so, Sumit Nagal will be the only Indian to participate in the first Grand Slam singles event of the season. Nagal was awarded a wild card entry in the men’s singles event.
Ramkumar Ramanathan lost in the first round of the men’s singles, while Prajnesh Gunneshwaran lost 2-6 3-6 to French player Constant Lestienne in the second round.
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