Joshna Chinappa, Saurav Ghosal set to fight for top honours in National Squash Championship
Indian squash players, including Saurav Ghosal and Joshna Chinappa would fight it out for top honours in the 73rd Senior National Squash Championship
Mumbai: Top Indian squash players, including defending men's and women's champions Saurav Ghosal and Joshna Chinappa would fight it out for top honours along with others like Harinderpal Sandhu and Dipika Pallikal in the 73rd Senior National Squash Championship starting in Mumbai on Wednesday.
World no. 10 Ghosal, who has won the title 10 times, and 14-time winner Joshna, ranked 19th globally, are seeded no. 1 in their respective sections.
The expected all-Chennai face-off between Joshna and second seed Dipika - who will play her first nationals since 2011 - in the final is among the main attractions in the six- day event at the Otters Club in suburban Bandra.
The championship, being held under the auspices of the Squash Rackets Federation of India, has attracted over 440 entries in nine categories.
"The nationals is an extremely prestigious event on the domestic calendar and I believe it is the responsibility of the top players to participate to showcase the best of Indian squash," said Ghosal in the run-up to the event.
The other significant players in the men's section include Ravi Dixit, the Mumbai quartet of second seed Mahesh Mangaonkar, Aryaman Adik of the host club, Vikram Malhotra and Veer Chotrani, Kush Kumar, Delhi's Gaurav Nandrajog and Tamil Nadu's Velavan Senthilkumar.
"I look forward to playing the nationals again," said Dipika, who won the title five years ago.
"I have enjoyed playing the nationals since I was 12 and it is one domestic tournament I look forward to in the year. It is something I have to be a part of every year," said Joshna.
"I had a lot of competition while playing the senior nationals early on in my career as a junior and winning it then was hard. Now, it will be even harder playing with Dipika," she added.
In a first, the prize money for the men and women's individual winners will be equal and both will receive Rs 1.25 lakh each.
While the qualification rounds for men will be held from tomorrow, the main draw for all categories will get under way from 14 July.
Both India teams will pocket at least a bronze medal for the reaching the semifinals, just like they did in Guangzhou four years ago.
Indian squash players Dipika Pallikal Karthik, Joshna Chinappa and Saurav Ghosal had to be content with bronze medals after losing to their respective opponents in the semi-finals of the 18th Asian Games.
Asian Games 2018: Saurav Ghosal, Joshna Chinappa and Dipika Pallikal reach semis to assure India of three medals in squash
India were assured of three medals in squash competition of the 18th Asian Games with Saurav Ghosal, Joshna Chinappa and Dipika Pallikal Karthik advancing to the semifinals of their respective singles events.