Moazzam Rashid wins Srinagar Open Tennis C’ship

Excelsior Sports Correspondent
Srinagar, Sept 19: Moazzam Rashid won both singles and doubles titles at Srinagar Open Tennis Championship which was played at Gindun Tennis Courts here today.
In the singles final, Moazzam Rashid defeated Inayat Jehangir in straight sets 6-3, 6-1.
Moazzam dominated the match right from the word go, taking a 3-0 lead in no time.
However, the 46-year-old veteran, in an attempt to go one better than last year, reverted to his attritional brand of tennis, forcing several errors from the defending champion.
Inayat held his serve and then broke Moazzam’s to make it 3-2. The two players then exchanged breaks to make it 4-3 in favour of Moazzam.
While the long rallies continued for the rest of the set, Mozzam’s better skill set and energy levels saw him through in the remainder of the match.
Earlier, partnering with Haider Hussain, Moazzam overcame stiff fight from Inayat and Tufail Bhat to take home the title, prevailing 6-1, 6-4.
The defending champions won the first set in under 30 minutes but had some anxious moments in the second as they trailed 4-3. However, Tufail and Inayat went back to their erroneous ways to throw in the towel.
The tournament was played over nine days with over 40 players taking part in the singles and doubles events of the tournament. As many as 70 matches – 60 round robin and 10 knock out – were played.
National chief selector for Wushu Kuldeep Handoo, the only Dronacharya awardee from Jammu and Kashmir, was the chief guest at the prize distribution ceremony.
“Tennis is very popular globally but somehow it had not caught the imagination of sportsmen in Kashmir. But I am sure that events like these will change that scenario for good, ” Handoo said.
General secretary of the Association Gurmit Singh said this was the first step for a big leap in promoting tennis in Kashmir.
Kulwant Singh said, “There are some very good players which I saw during the two-day stay here. I am sure more youngsters will be drawn to the game, and with exposure, they can shine at national level,”.