India's Ramkumar Ramanathan saved four match points in a marathon five-setter against Marc Polmans but a Grand Slam main draw eluded him yet again as he lost the final qualifying round at the Wimbledon championships, in London on Thursday. (More Sports News)
Showing nerves of steel, Ramkumar saved one match point after another but eventually lost 3-6 6-3 6-7(2) 6-3 9-11 to his Australian rival after battling his heart out in a three hour and 30-minute contest.
In the current generation of Indian men's player, Ramkumar is the only one who has not yet competed in a tennis major.
Even Sumit Nagal, who started his career way after Ramkumar, now remains in contention to compete at Grand Slam events.
It was Ramkumar's 21st attempt to qualify for a tennis major since 2015.
Ramkumar was down a set and a break when he began to fight better and eventually clawed his way back into the match.
He had several opportunities to break his rival in the third set but squandered all. However, he kept on fighting and made yet another recovery by racing to a 3-0 lead in the fourth set.
The Indian succeeded in pushing the contest to the deciding fifth set in which he was in danger of getting broken in the fourth game but managed to hold.
He was down a match point while serving at 4-5 but held his nerves to survive. Again, he faced three more match points in game 12 but saved all to stretch the contest.
Eventually, the Australian managed to break his tenacious rival in the 20th game and booked his ticket for next week's action.
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