CHENNAI, JUNE 21,
Three sessions a day for three weeks. The Indian boys have been training hard for the last three days at the ISA courts to make their mark in a tough field at the World junior (under-19) championships to be held here between July 18 and 29. Deepak Mishra, head coach of the boys’ team, while admitting it would be difficult for India to win a medal, he expected the boys to create an upset or two in the individual section and aim for a fifth-place finish in the team event. “In the last edition [Bielsko-Biala] in 2016, our boys finished sixth, and we are keen to go one better,” said the 23-year-old Mishra. Mishra was hopeful of Utkarsh Baheti, Veer Chotrani and Yash Fatde making a impact and creating a few upsets.
“The boys have been putting in a lot of hard work in training. I hope that they cause a few upsets,” he said. “If any of our boys could reach the quarterfinals, it will be a big thing.”
Tough going, but…
Cyrus Poncha, the National coach, who is also the tournament director for the World juniors, conceded that the boys were very young and hence would find the going difficult. He was optimistic of the same boys doing well at the World juniors two years later. “We will win a medal and [hopefully] a gold then,” said Poncha.
Meanwhile, in the draw released on Tuesday, defending champions Marwan Tarek and Rowan Elaraby of Egypt have been given top billing in the boys’ and girls’ sections respectively.
The top 16 boys seeds comprise six Egyptians, three Englishmen, two Malaysians apart from players from USA, Canada, Mexico, Colombia and Switzerland. On the other hand, the women’s seedings has players from Egyot, Malaysia, England, Hong Kong, USA and Scotland with Egypt looking to capture the team title for the eighth year in a row.
CHENNAI, JUNE 21,