Apr 14, 2015 Sports
The first Annual Assuria Classic Open Tennis tournament rolled off with six matches at the National Racquet Centre on Camp Street. The tournament, which is expected to last two weeks and sees competition in five categories, attracted Guyana’s top players and fresh faces on the tournament circuit.
Daniel Razick, who won the Novice Trophy Stall 2014 doubles, defeated Akeem Bailey 6-1 in the Novice Medley Singles. Fiona Bushell also had a 6-1 win over fellow club member Patricia Hope in the same category. The Men’s Open had wins by Hemant Dalip against Malik Williams, 6-1, 6-0. The seasoned Benjettan Osborne took a comfortable 6-0, 6-1 win against Jeevan Dalip who played well, despite this being his first competition.
Jason Andrews and Sandeep Chand played in the main event of the day with much excitement and buzz around the match up since the two old rivals never fail to bring their best game. Chand opened and held serve in the opening set with Andrews doing the same, followed by both trading a break to level the score at 2-2. Andrews took the advantage of breaking Chand to gain a substantial lead of 5-2 and serve for the set and eventually secured the set at 6-3. Both players served well, hitting a high percentage of first serves but Andrews’ consistency and approaches at the net gave him the edge over Chand.
The second set started with a bang when Andrews powered the first ace of the match to take to take the first game which seem to put him in the overdrive. He then took a 4-1 lead over Chand, who with an ace brought the score to 2-4. Andrews took a 5-2 lead and it seemed history would be repeated as in the first set. Chand took a medical time out after apparent leg cramps. On serve, Andrews lost two match points after a dicey call made on the serve. Chand then mounted a comeback to force a tiebreak. Although the lighting was insufficient due to lack of court lights the two battled on where Andrews took a 4-1 lead but lost the following 6 points to drop the set to Chand at 6-7. Chand had a good come back which can be attributed to mental toughness and coming up with winners at the right time.
A visibly bothered Andrews shook Chand’s hands declared his retirement from the match. When asked about his decision he noted that he was, “Perturbed and stunned by his (Chand) unsportsmanlike behaviour and decided not to continue the following day”.
“I think Jason played better today. I was just fortunate to hold on in the second set and win some critical points. It was a challenge for both of us playing on that surface,” Chand said in his post match interview. The 3-6 7-6(7-4) win by Sandeep Chand sets up his next match against Harry Panday.
Other matches will continue during the week and this weekend at the National Racquet Centre and Le Resouvenir Tennis Club.
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