TENNIS

Helibronn Challenger: Sumit Nagal beats Ritschard to win title

Sumit Nagal beat Alexander Ritschard of Switzerland 6-1, 6-7(5), 6-3 in the final of the €120,950 Challenger tennis tournament in Helibronn, Germany, on Sunday.

It was the second Challenger title of the season for the 26-year-old Sumit, following the one in Chennai. It was his sixth career title in Challengers, and 15th singles title in the professional circuit.

The champion collected €16,550 and 100 ATP points. The runner-up got €9,705 and 50 points.

The 95th ranked Sumit, who had enjoyed a career-best rank of 80 in April, is expected to jump up in rankings and build a strong base for breaking into the top-50.

The results:

€120,950 Challenger, Heilbronn, Germany: Singles (final): Sumit Nagal bt Alexander Ritschard (Sui) 6-1, 6-7(5), 6-3; Semifinals: Sumit bt Luca Van Assche (Fra) 6-2, 7-6(5)

$15,000 ITF women, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic: Singles (quarterfinals): Darja Vidmanova (Cze) bt Riya Bhatia 6-3, 6-2. Doubles (semifinals): Jessica Gomez (Mex) & Noelia Melgar (Bol) bt Sharmada Balu & Riya Bhatia 7-6(7), 6-4; Quarterfinals: Sharmada & Riya bt Maria Hernandez (Mex) & Kelly Willford (Dom) 3-6, 6-2, [10-4].

-Team Sportstar

GOLF

India’s Shubhankar Sharma shot a slightly pedestrian one-under 71 in the third round to slip to Tied-26th at the Volvo Car Scandinavian Mixed golf tournament.

Sharma, who had 69-69 in his first two rounds, was looking good at three-under through the first eight holes with four birdies against one bogey.

He then found the water off the tee on Par-4 13th and he also went into deep rough and finally holed for a triple bogey. A birdie on the next hole, Par-3 14th was a small consolation as he slipped from T20 to T26.

Sweden’s Sebastian Söderberg continued his incredible form firing a round of 6-under 66. He has led from round one, once again picked up where he left off with back-to-back birdies on holes two and three. He birdied the sixth before and the eighth to make the turn in four-under.

Another pair of back-to-back birdies on 12 and 13 was followed by his first bogey of the week on the 14th but he rectified that with a birdie on 15 with applause from the home crowd.

He is 21-under-par and held a eight-shot advantage.

Scotland’s Calum Hill sits in outright second place after producing a round of 5-under 67 to be eight shots behind Söderberg on 13-under-par.

Three players are in a share of third place with Spain’s Santiago Tarrio, England’s Alice Hewson and Sweden’s Alexander Björk on 12-under-par.

The Volvo Car Scandinavian Mixed is co-sanctioned by the DP World Tour and Ladies European Tour, with 78 men and 78 women competing on the same course for one prize fund and one trophy.

-PTI

Aditi Ashok misses cut at LPGA Classic

Two late birdies were not enough to help Aditi Ashok make the cut at the ShopRite LPGA Classic on the LPGA Tour.

The Bengaluru golfer, who shot 2-under 69 in the first round, faltered on the second day as she was 2-over after 13 holes. She birdied the 16th and the 18th, but failed to make the final round in windy conditions that made scoring tough.

She was 2-under for two rounds and missed the cut by one.

Jenny Shin shot a 2-under 69 and will take a one-shot lead into the final round as she seeks her first victory since 2016.

The 31-year-old from South Korea had six birdies and four bogeys to post a two-day total of 10-under 132.

Albane Valenzuela, who is trying to become the first Swiss player to win on the Tour, shot a 68 and was alone in second, a shot ahead of Ssu-Chia Cheng, Narin An, Megan Khang and Wei-Ling Hsu.

Ayaka Furue, who has six top-10 finishes this year including a tied-sixth in last week’s U.S. Women’s Open, was among the group three shots back.

Yuka Saso, who won her second U.S. Women’s Open title last week, missed the cut which fell at 3-under.

-PTI

Avani makes the cut in LET Access Series

Avani Prashanth made the cut despite a disappointing 78 in the second round of the Montauban Ladies Open on the LET Access Series.

Avani, who with a round of 71 was T-14 after the first day, faced the danger of missing the cut as she triple-bogeyed the par-4 15th, bogeyed the par-4 17th and double-bogeyed the par-4 18th. At 5-over for two rounds she was tied 46th.

The other Indian in the field, Durga Nittur (75-81) missed the cut.

Australia’s Kelsey Bennett stayed one shot ahead heading into the final round. The New South Wales golfer had a commanding start with two birdies in the first three holes but then started to struggle and scored three bogeys in a row. She carded 2-over 74 and 7-under for two days.

Close on Bennett’s heels is Italy’s Erika De Martini who fired two consistent rounds of 69 to head into the final round on six-under-par.

Two shots behind Bennett lies Switzerland’s Tiffany Arafi who has had a steady climb towards the top of the leaderboard with rounds of 70 and 69.

Scotland’s Louise Duncan and German amateur Helen Briem are tied-fourth on four-under-par.

-PTI

ATHLETICS

Sanjivani bags top spot in 10,000m event in Portland

Asian Championships bronze medallist runner Sanjivani Jadhav won the gruelling women’s 10,000m race at the Portland Track Festival High-Performance Meet, clocking a personal best time of 32:22.77 seconds.

Portland has turned out to be a happy hunting ground for the 27-year-old long-distance runner, who had finished second in the event last year, registering 32:46.88 seconds, her first sub-33 mark.

Another Indian in the fray, Seema finished fifth clocking 32:55.91.

Commonwealth and Asian Games medallist, Avinash Sable clocked 8:21.85 seconds in men’s 3000m steeplechase to finish second, though he was a good 10 seconds adrift of his national record of 8:11.20, set at the 2022 CWG where he had won the silver medal.

American Kenneth Rooks, winner of the 3000m steeplechase national title at the 2023 USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships, took the top spot clocking 8:18.77, and coming close to the meet record of 8:18.55.

Ace Indian women’s long-distance runner Parul Chaudhary, winner of gold (5000m) and silver (3000m steeplechase) at the Hangzhou Asian Games last year, finished third in steeplechase, clocking 9:31.38 seconds, which was nearly 16 seconds adrift from the national record of 9:15.31 in her name set in Budapest last year.

Another Indian in the event, Priti, was 20th clocking 10:12.88 seconds.

Several Indian elite middle and long-distance athletes currently training in Colorado are competing in Portland Track Festival.

-PTI

Gold for Sanjivani, silver for Sable at Portland Track Festival

Asian Games champion Avinash Sable opened his season in the 3000m steeple chase with a silver in the Portland Track Festival, a World Athletics Continental Tour bronze event, in Oregon on Saturday. He clocked 8:21.85s.

Meanwhile, Asian champion Parul Chaudhary took the bronze in the women’s 3000m steeple chase in a season-best 9:31.38s.

Former Asian bronze medallist Sanjivani Jadhav struck gold in the women’s 10,000m in 32:22.77s, a time which was a second off her personal best, while Seema was sixth in 32:55.91s.

In the men’s 10,000m, Asian Games silver medallist Kartik Kumar was fourth (28:14.67s) while Abhishek Pal was 26th (29:41.74).

In France, Annu Rani – the Asian Games gold medallist with 62.92m last year – took the women’s javelin throw silver with 57.48m at the Strasbourg National meet.

And in Britain’s BMC Watford GP, Asian Games silver medallist Mohammad Afsal was sixth in the men’s 800m (race A) in 1:49.11s.

-Stan Rayan

MOTORSPORT

Akshat, Nikhilesh, Rivaan win in first round of FMSCI National Karting Championship Rotax Max 2024

Bengaluru’s Akshat Misra (Crest Motorsports) strolled to victory in the Senior Max final with a dominating win in the first round of the MECO-FMSCI National Karting Championship Rotax Max 2024 at the Kartopia track on Sunday.

The other winners were Nikhilesh Raju (Peregrine Racing), also from Bengaluru, in the Junior Max category and Chennai’s Rivaan Dev Preetham (MSPORT) who topped the Micro Max class.

From (L-R), winners Nikhilesh Raju (Junior Max), Rivaan Dev Preetham (Micro Max) and Akshat Misra (Senior Max).

From (L-R), winners Nikhilesh Raju (Junior Max), Rivaan Dev Preetham (Micro Max) and Akshat Misra (Senior Max).
| Photo Credit:
Special Arrangement

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From (L-R), winners Nikhilesh Raju (Junior Max), Rivaan Dev Preetham (Micro Max) and Akshat Misra (Senior Max).
| Photo Credit:
Special Arrangement

The final runs in all three rounds witnessed close competition in the early laps until the eventual winners managed to break away from the bunch.

-Team Sportstar

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