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25/11/2012
PRAGUE OPEN 2012
 

Mahesh Makes PSA Breakthrough In Prague

Mahesh Makes PSA Breakthrough In Prague

RESULTS: PSA Challenger 5 Prague Open, Prague, Czech Republic

India's Mahesh Mangaonkar marked his maiden appearance in a PSA World Tour final in style by winning his first title at the Prague Open, the PSA Challenger 5 event at Squash Club Praha in the Czech Republic capital.

Seeded four, the 18-year-old from Mumbai made his breakthrough in the semi-finals when he upset French favourite Julien Balbo in four games.

His opponent in the final was also a Frenchman - unseeded Lucas Serme who secured his fifth Tour final appearance by upsetting third-seeded fellow countryman Joan Lezaud in the other semi.

"The ultimate contest between the Indian and the Frenchman lasted almost two hours," said event spokesman Adam Englund. "Both of the finalists reached the bottom of their strength reserves - the cramps got them during the third game. Nonetheless, they endured and provided the audience with a spectacle they are not likely to forget.

"Until the last minute, it was unclear who would win - but then there it was. Mahesh won his first PSA tournament in an incredible fashion and can now be officially titled the 'squash maharaja'."

Mangaonkar was delighted with his 5-11, 11-5, 9-11, 11-9, 11-9 victory: "It was brutally hard and excruciatingly long. I'm totally dead. This was definitely the number one match for me," said the exhausted Indian after the match.

1st round:
[1] Julien Balbo (FRA) bt [Q] Carlos Cornes Ribadas (ESP) 11-7, 11-8, 11-7
[Q] Chris Fuller (ENG) bt Omar Mohie Elddin Marei (EGY) w/o
Reiko Peter (SUI) bt Nathan Lake (ENG) 11-7, 8-11, 6-11, 11-7, 11-9
[4] Mahesh Mangaonkar (IND) bt [Q] Matias Tuomi (FIN) 10-12, 11-0, 11-4, 11-7
[3] Joan Lezaud (FRA) bt Ondrej Ertl (CZE) 11-9, 11-6, 5-11, 11-4
[Q] Andre Haschker (GER) bt Adam Murrills (ENG) 5-11, 12-10, 11-8, 12-14, 12-10
Lucas Serme (FRA) bt Alex Ingham (ENG) 11-4, 11-5, 11-6
[2] Davide Bianchetti (ITA) bt Abdulla Mohd Al Tamimi (QAT) 11-7, 8-11, 13-11, 11-7

Quarter-finals:
[1] Julien Balbo (FRA) bt [Q] Chris Fuller (ENG) 11-6, 11-8, 11-4
[4] Mahesh Mangaonkar (IND) bt Reiko Peter (SUI) 16-14, 11-2, 11-3
[3] Joan Lezaud (FRA) bt [Q] Andre Haschker (GER) 11-9, 11-9, 11-9
Lucas Serme (FRA) bt [2] Davide Bianchetti (ITA) 11-7, 13-15, 8-11, 11-0, 11-5

Semi-finals:
[4] Mahesh Mangaonkar (IND) bt [1] Julien Balbo (FRA) 11-2, 11-6, 9-11, 12-10
Lucas Serme (FRA) bt [3] Joan Lezaud (FRA) 12-10, 11-8, 11-9

Final:
[4] Mahesh Mangaonkar (IND) bt Lucas Serme (FRA) 5-11, 11-5, 9-11, 11-9, 11-9