by Suman Gupta
Mumbai, August: It will be a squash extravaganza at the Bombay Gymkhana from August 15 to August 20, when one of the city’s premier venues for squash hosts the 44th Maharashtra State Men’s Squash tournament and the inaugural Western Slam (Junior), at their international standard glass-back squash courts. Both the events will be organised under the aegis of SRFI and Maharashtra Squash Rackets Association and are sponsored by JSW, Raheja Corp, Shoppers Stop, Indospace Logistics.
Mumbai’s Mahesh Mangaonkar, current India No.2 and Urwashi Joshi, who is ranked No.3 in the country will be the top seeds for the Rs 7.5 lakh prize money, Maharashtra State championship, which is one of the longest-running squash tournaments in the country and will be played from August 16th to 20th. India No. 3 and 4 Vikram Malhotra and Tanvi Khanna will be the 2nd seed in Men’s and Women’s Open respectively. The Maharashtra State tournament will consist of competitions in 5 different categories – Men’s Open, Women’s Open, Men’s Over 35, Men’s Over 45, Men’s Over 55 and Professionals.
The Junior event, which has been accorded the status of an Asian Squash Federation Silver tournament is a 5-Star tournament on the Indian Junior squash circuit and will see participation from the best junior talent in the country from the age groups of under-11 to under-19 and will run August 15 to 20.
Speaking about the new development Championship Organiser Sumeet Rewari said, “We are overwhelmed by the response we have received for the inaugural Western Slam (Junior). With more than 450 entries it has become one of the highest participated inaugural tournament.” “We have also reintroduced the women’s category this year, ” he further added.
Sumeet Rewari is the Championship Chairman and Director and Srikanth Seshadri is the Championship Administrator.
Maharashtra State Men: Mahesh Mangaonkar (MAH) , Vikram Malhotra (MAH) , Abhishek Aggarwal (MAH) [3/4], Abhishek Pradhan (MAH) [3/4], Abhay Singh (TN) [5/8], Gaurav Nandarjog (DEL) [5/8], Ranjit Singh (Services) [5/8], Yash Fadte (GOA) [5/8]
Maharashtra State Women: Urwashi Joshi (MAH) , Tanvi Khanna (DEL) , Akanksha Salunkhe (GOA) [3/4], Sachika Balvani (MAH) [3/4], Akanksha Rao (MAH) [5/8], Nikita Agarwal (MAH) [5/8], Radhika Rathore (MP) [5/8], Yoshna Singh (MAH) [5/8].
Indian Junior Open: Boys’ U-19: Yash Fadte (GOA) , Rahul Baitha (MAH) , Araash Mehta (MAH) [3/4], Suraj Chand (MAH) [3/4], Avinash Yadav (MAH) [5/8], Jaideep Singh Sethi (UP) [5/8], Prithvi Singh (CHG) [5/8], Vivaan Jaikishan (MAH) [5/8]
Girls’ U-19: Bhavana Goyal (MAH) , Amira Singh (DEL) , Amita Gondi (TEL) [3/4], Rewa Bharma (MAH) [3/4], Amaaz Brar (RAJ) [5/8], Diya Moolani (MAH) [5/8], Saumya Raj (KAR), Mithali Uttamchand (TN) [5/8]