Palha crowned champ
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Tamilnadu's second seed Vijay Sundar Prashanth and Goa's Natasha Palha emerged the Single's Champions in the Men's & Women's category respectively in the Omkar-All India Ranking Men's & Women's 12 lac Tennis Championship, 2013 played at the Juhu Vile Gymkhana Club.
In the men's showpiece event, second seed Vijay Sundar Prashanth secured his second Omkar men's singles title as he ended a remarkable run by talented youngster Mohit Mayur, winning 6-2, 6-1. In the Women's final, Natasha after coming from a set down to beat Sharmada Balu 2-6, 6-4, 6-3 in a highly entertaining final.
Balu was looking good to clinch her second prize of the tournament, having won the mixed doubles title with Prashanth on Friday, as she raced away with the first set, twice managing to break the Palha serve. But the wild card entrant was eventually denied by the resilient second seed who rode on some tremendous crowd support to complete an amazing comeback, thus going one better than her runner-up effort in the tournament's inaugural edition in 2010.
The men's final had also promised to be a closely fought affair between Prashanth and Mayur whose impressive march to the final which began from the qualifying round had seen him stun top seed and India no. 4 Vishnu Vardhan in the second round. However, the strain of a hectic campaign eventually took its toll on Mayur as he began experiencing muscle stiffness in his back mid way through the first set which restricted his usual supple movement across the court. His cause was hardly helped by an opponent who appeared to have reserved his best performance for last as Prashant produced a series of winners to cruise to the title and add to his triumph here in 2010.
Final Results: Men's singles: 2-Vijay Sundar Prashanth (TN) bt Mohit Mayur (TN) 6-2, 6-1. Women's singles: 2-Natasha Palha (GOA) bt Sharmada Balu (Karnataka)2-6, 6-4, 6-3.