Australian Open 2024: Sumit Nagal grateful to fans after second-round exit
What a rollercoaster the last few days have been, says the Indian
A day after raising Indian hopes at the Australian Open, Sumit Nagal’s challenge was brought to a halt by Juncheng Shang, a Chinese 18-year-old wild card entry, in a four-setter second round match on Thursday.
Penning a heartfelt note after his exit on X, the 26-year-old wrote: “What a rollercoaster the last few days have been at the Australian Open. Disappointed to not get over the line today, but also proud of the run I had. Thanks a lot to my sponsors Indian Oil, Aryan Pumps, Yonex, ASICS, Gatorade & Maha Tennis Foundation for the support. Thanks to my coaches Sascha Nensel, Milos Galecic, and Dr. Cynthia Hucks-Smith for all the work they’ve been putting in.”
“A massive thanks to everyone for the electrifying support at the courts. And to everyone back home for all the love. I enjoyed reading all your wonderful comments and messages,” Nagal added.
Coming into the match after an inspiring win over 27th seed Uzbek Alexander Bublik, Nagal began on a strong note and took the first set, but the Chinese got better as the game progressed to walk out the winner with a 2-6, 6-3, 7-5, 6-4 scoreline.
Nagal, who comes from Jhajjar in Haryana, will nevertheless exit Melbourne Park with cherished memories, not to speak of a purse of approximately AUD 180,000 (Rs 98 lakh) — which should take care of most of his 2024 ATP Tour budget.
Meanwhile in doubles, India’s Rohan Bopanna and his Australian partner Matthew Ebden came down from a 0-5 deficit in the opening set to beat the local team of James Duckworth and Marc Polmans. The Indian pair of Vijay Sundar Prashanth and Anirudh Chandrasekar lost 3-6, 4-6 to the Hungarian pair of Marton Fucsovics and Fabian Marozsan.
N. Sriram Balaji, who has paired with Romania’s Victor Vlad Cornea, will now open his campaign on Friday as their match against Italian pair Matteo Arnaldi and Andrea Pellegrino has been rescheduled due to rain.