It was a day
Chandrakant Pawar will cherish all his life. Egged on by the young and old
members of the Otters Club Pawar defeated Gopi Mohite, of Bombay Gymkhana,
15-12, 15-5, 17-15 to become the champion of the inaugural Pro Masters
squash tournament, sponsored by Monarch Builder’s and Mudra Fabrics.
Pawar the Leela Pro won
Rs.6,000 in this Rs.25,000 prize money tournament held exclusively for
professionals. Mojite won Rs.4,000 as well as the hearts of the Otters
Club fans, That towards the end of the match the club members were
spurring Mohite on to do his best was proof of the respect Mohite
employed the right tactics only towards the end of the third game when he
was moving Pawar all over the court with cross courts and length shots.
That is how he saved five match points. Mohite did not enjoy the luck of
the underdog, being penalized for a “stroke” then down 11-13. It took
Pawar to match point. Mohite showed resilience to level up. But as Pawar
kept the ball to the back court Mohite was unable to bring into play his
winning side wall shots. He missed a couple of overheads and that it .
In the first two games,
Mohite engaged Pawar in any number of rallies. It was unfortunate, that
Mohite could not stretch Pawar to the limit.
Prakash Yelve of
Willingdon Sports Club, won the prize for the most promising player.
Prakash Yelve of
Willingdon Sports Club caused a big upset in the Monarch and Mudra
sponsored First Pro Masters squash tournament when he knocked out the
fourth seed, Ramesh More of Bombay Gymkhana in five games at the Otters
Club courts this evening.
Yelve was down 1-2 but
never gave up picking up every return much to the annoyance of his rival
who towards the end, ran out of stamina. Even then, More was leading 5-1
in the deciding fifth game but could do little as Yelve reeled off eight
points in a row to go 11-6 ahead and never look back.
A city businessman
Mahendra Agarwal, has a unique new year comment, to help the squash
The professionals or
makers as they are called perform various duties at the clubs, including
coaching. Agarwal felt that they were never suitably rewarded. Hence his
decision to hold a tournament exclusively for them.
With the co-operation
of Otters Club, the Squash Masters tournament will be held in the second
week of January. Some 20 professionals including the reigning national
champion Chandrakant Pawar who coaches at the Leela will be taking part.
The top eight will play a round robin and vie for the top prize of
Rs.6,000 out of a total of Rs.25000.
control as well as penchant for the boast shot, Gopi Mohite, of Bombay
Gymkhana, put it across the second seed Anant More, of the Criket Club of
India, to enter the final of the Rs.25,000 Monarch and Mudra-sponsored
first Squash Pro Master tournament at the Otters Club courts this evening.
Mohite, the third seed won 15-11, 15-8, 15-10 and takes on the hot
favourite Chandrakant Pawar, of the Leela, in the final.
Egged on by his home
crowd, Pawar who began service in the billiards department of the Otters
Club had several of the youngster he has knocked up with cheering him on
his semi-final against Prakash Yelve, of Willingdon Sports Club. Yelve had
served notice of his threat by ousting fourth-seeded Ramesh More
yesterday. Today, he showed great retrieving ability and matched Pawar for
speed. But Pawar’s over all control and his reading of his opponents
game told in the end. There was good stroke play from both players and
Pawar’s greater control over the drop shots helped him cut off the
several rallies that ensued.
The Pro Masters squash
tournament was once again hit due to the unavailability of the players.
There has only been a single day’s play possible since the riots. Today
though the courts at the Otters Club were lying vacant matches could be
Santosh More, the
Otters professional, said matches would be held tomorrow and in all
probability the final would be held on Wednesday.
One does not quite
understand why the tournament was not cancelled or postponed to the first
week of February. Squash Rackets Association of Maharashtra (SRAM) too is
at fault as they did not think it wise to have a proper organizer. This is
the first time the Professionals are holding the tournament and the SRAM
should have chipped in to help them out.
THIRD SEEDED Gopi
Mohite of Bombay Gymkhana scored an upset win over second seed Anant More
of CCI in a semi-final encounter of the Monarch and Mudra sponsored first
Pro Masters Squash Tournament at the Otters Club, Bandra on Tuesday.
In a evenly fought
match, Mohite putting up a determined approach prevailed 15-11, 15-8, 15-10
to advance into the final where he will clash with top seed Chandrakant
Pawar of the Leela.
The 38 Year Pawar the
National champion got the better of Prakesh Yelve (Willingdon Sports Club)
in a keenly contested second semi-final. Yelve who subdued forth seeded
Ramesh More (Bombay Gymkhana) in the quarter Finals on Monday gave another
fine display and made his opponent fight for ever point. However, Yelve
unable to match the skills of Pawar went down 7-15, 10-15, 3-15. The
winner of Wednesday’s final stand to pocket the first prize of Rs.6,000.
WHILE playing squash at
the Leela Kempinski courts, Mahendra Agarwal of Monarch Builders and
Prashant Agarwal of Mudra Fabrics came in contact with professional
Chandrakant Pawar, who besides practicing with the guests also coaches
them. They felt that the game to which Pawar has rendered yeoman service
at the squash courts all over the city, needed a boost and the idea to –
a prize-money tournament exclusively for professionals was born.
The first Squash Pro
Masters will be held at the Otters Club from January 11 to 14. It will
carry Rs.25,000 as prize money with the winner richer by Rs.4,000. The
losing semi-finalist will get Rs.2,500 and the losing quarter finalists
Rs.1,500. There will also be prizes forpromising players of the qualifying rounds.
Twenty players will
take part in the qualifying rounds and four will qualify for the
tournament proper in which there will be a total of eight players.
professionals from the city who will be participating are the reigning
National Pro champion, Chandrakant Pawar, who has won the title for the
last six years in a row. He also won the state title thrice and won the
Dubai Open in 1988; Anant More of Bombay Gymkhana, who has won the
national once and Gopi Mohite, also of Bombay Gymkhana, a national and
Western India champion.
The city’s squashprofessionals will get a tremendous boost when the tournament
exclusively held for them, the Monarch and Mudra Fabrics-sponsored
Rs.25,000 First Squash Pro. Masters, commences at the Otters Club Bandra
Sponsors Mahendra and
Prashant Agarwal came up with this idea and the ones to benefit from it
are going to be Chandrakant Pawarthe
Leela Prowho won his sixth national professionals title at Madras
early this month and is the top seed, the More brothers, Anant andRamesh, who work at CCI and Bombay Gymkhana, and Gopi Mohite, who
is the professional at Bombay Gymkhana. These four are seeded directly
into the last eight. The other four places will be taken by the
semi-finalists of the qualifying round which has attracted twenty entries.
The winner takes home
Rs.6,000, the runner up Rs.4,000, the losing semi-finalists Rs.2500 and
the quarter finalists Rs. 1,500 each. There are prizes for the promising
players of the qualifying rounds.
It was a fitting finale
to the first Squash Pro Masters Tournament, sponsored by Monarch Builders
and Mudra Fabric when Chandrakant Pawar, the leading professional, won the
title on his home Otters club courts on Wednesday evening.
In the final, his
opponent Gopi Mohite was found wanting in tactical acumen which Pawar had
in plenty. That was the difference as Pawar won 15-123, 15-5, 17-15.
The final was full of
strokeplay which made the young and old members of the Otters Club sigh
with pleasure. Both players played every stroke in the book except
overheads into the nick. Pawar did not experiment too much and kept the
ball in play. Mohite was prone to using the board for too often Pawar
realized this and kept anticipating this shot and won comfortably first
By the time Mohite
realized his wrong tactics, he had a big leeway to make a 7-13 lead. He
came up with tremendous resilience to level at 14 all, but did not enjoy
the breaks. Pawar played with utmost caution and gained the biggest pay
check in this country of Rs.6,000. He had won a higher amount when winning
the Dubai Open, some years ago, but this triumph he will remember a long
time for it came in front of his home crowd, with players who he had
practiced with young and old watching and enjoying it all. Prakash Yelve
was adjudged the most promising player of the tournament which was a huge
success with over 20 players taking part. Now the next idea of the
sponsors will be to have a team event for clubs and hotels.
Chandrakant Sakarkar of
Willingdon S.C. was taken over four games four games by Nandkumar Gajne ofKhar Gymkhana in the first round of the Monarch and Mudra Pro
Masters squash tournament which began at the Otters Club yesterday.
Sakarkar won 15-11, 15-11, 12-15, 15-3.
Tournament Organised by ISP
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Indian Squash Professionals
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Tel : 9122-28314425/26/27