He is the fourth Indian in the men’s singles draw.

Ramkumar Ramanathan posted a brilliant victory against Mattia Bellucci to enter the singles main draw in the fifth Tata Open Maharashtra 2023 at the Balewadi Stadium in Pune on Sunday.

The 28-year-old Indian, who came as a wildcard, put up a spectacular show in the final round of the qualifiers to secure a comfortable 6-3, 7-5 win over the No. 3 seed Italian.

Ramanathan will be the fourth Indian to feature in the singles main draw at the ongoing edition of South Asia’s only ATP 250 event, which is being conducted by the Maharashtra State Lawn Tennis Association (MSLTA) in association with the Government of Maharashtra for fifth year in Pune.

India No. 1 Mukund Sasikumar, Sumit Nagal and the 15-year-old Manas Dhamne are the country’s other three players to compete in the main draw.

Meanwhile, in another qualifying match, Yuki Bhambri’s challenge came to an end after he suffered a 1-6, 4-6 loss against the last edition’s semi-finalist Elias Ymer.

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Maximilian Marterer and Flavio Cobolli were the other two players to progress into the main event. While Marterer beat Nikola Milojevic 6-2, 6-3, Cobolli got the better of Zdenek Kolar by 6-4, 6-4.

The Pune-born tennis prodigy Dhamne is set to kickstart India’s challenge in the main draw on Monday when he takes on the American player Michael Mmoh in the singles opening round match. Sumit Nagal will also be seen in action against Filip Krajinovic. The tournament will go on till January 7.

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