Yasitha upsets defending Champ Sharmal
Yasitha de Silva created the biggest upset of the Nationals when he got the better of Defending Champion Sharmal Dissanayake before he retired hurt to clinch the Men’s Singles Title at the most prestigious Tennis Nationals 2020 worked off at the Sri Lanka Tennis Association hard courts yesterday.
After a hard fought first set which went into a tie breaker, Yasitha edged out Sharmal 7-6 (3), but unfortunately Sharmal couldn’t continue to play the second set and conceded a walk over to give Yasitha his first Major title in 2021.
Meanwhile, Number one seed Anika Seneviratne powered her way to the women’s singles crown with a well-deserved 6-0, 6-4 win over Janali Manamperi to clinch her first major title in 2021 and second at the hard court Nationals, which she last won in 2018.
The Ladies College star stunned with a bagel in the first set, and kept up the momentum with a two-set victory, and now has an incredible career record at this event.
Despite the excellent rallies and deft touches from both competitors, it was Anika who continued to come away with the points. It led to a couple of early breaks and then eventually a shutout in the opening set.
Anika playing with supreme confidence continued to go for her shots from the outset in the opening set, in addition to effectively employing the drop shot, which drew repeated errors from her opponent to wrap up the first set 6-0.
Things were much more competitive in the second set, with Janali finally earning her first break and getting the limited crowd behind her. It was still never easy to get points against the experienced Anika, who was all over the place. At the final stage of the second set, Anika’s experience came into play again, and she began winning the key points when it mattered most to wrap up the match and title with ease.
In the absence of defending Champion Anjelika Kurera, Anika kicked off the tournaments as the favourite in the Girls category, where she defeated Tuvini de Alwis (6-1, 6-1) in the quarter-final to cruise to the last four stage, and then overcame Savini Jayasuriya in the semis.