Squash: Joshna finishes runner-up in HKFC International

Hong Kong, May 28 (IANS) Ace Indian racqueteer Joshna Chinappa failed to bag the 12th Professional Squash Association (PSA) title after going down 9-11, 9-11, 11-9, 8-11 to New Zealand’s Joelle King in the hard-fought summit clash of the HKFC International here on Saturday.

Top seed King turned out to be India’s nemesis as she had earlier ended sixth seed Dipika Pallikal’s campaign in the quarter-final of the $25,000 event.

World No.13 Joshna had raised big hopes after upsetting the second seed and defending champion Annie Au in the semi-finals.

Saturday’s final turned out to be a nail-biting affair as both the South Asian Games (SAG) champion and King got off to strong starts before the Kiwi managed a narrow 11-9 lead in the first two games.

In the third game, the Indian third seed pulled off a brilliant comeback to pocket it 11-9 with some brilliant angular backhands only to go down fighting in the final game 8-11.

This was Joshna’s first PSA final since winning the NSCI Open in September.

Earlier, Dipika and Mahesh Mangaonkar had bowed out from this tournament. Last year’s men’s runner-up Saurav Ghosal had to pull out as he is recovering from a right foot injury.

–IANS

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