Ramkumar Ramanathan ‘annoyed’ by crowd making ‘too much’ noise between serves after settling for silver with Saketh Myneni at Asian Games

This is Ramkumar's first Asian Games medal, while Saketh earns his third.


Ramkumar Ramanathan ‘annoyed’ by crowd making ‘too much’ noise between serves after settling for silver with Saketh Myneni at Asian Games

Ramkumar Ramanathan Saketh Myneni at Asian Games (Via DDNews)

Saketh Myneni and Ramkumar Ramanathan fought hard but were unable to breach the wall of resistance put up by Chinese Taipei’s Jung Jason and Hsu Yu-hsiou of Chinese Taipei in the men’s doubles final. The Indian duo lost 4-6, 4-6 in front if unruly crowds to finish with silver medals at the Asian Games on Friday.

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On a day of celebration for the Chinese fans, as it is a full moon day in autumn, their behavior was not up to the mark. There were times in between the first and second serve, the crowds were shouting and jeering. Ramkumar complained to the chair umpire as well, but it fell on deaf ears.

Tennis is a game where etiquette has to be shown by the fans. For their part, the players also have to behave decently. It is not as if Saketh and Ramkumar were expecting the local fans to cheer for them. But to disturb their concentration while serving was definitely very irritating.

“They got off to a good start in the first set but overall the crowds were making too much noise,” Ramkumar told this writer. “I mean, this was not on, when you are cheering and shouting between serves. Saketh and I did our best. We played as well as we could and are happy to win a silver medal for India,” said Ramkumar.

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Ramkumar Ramanathan and Saketh Myneni acknowledge the importance of this Asian Games performance

Saketh has been around for long. As a gold medalist in the Incheon Asian Games in 2014 with Sania Mirza, he has been around for a long time. At 35, he still has the passion to play for India. “Both Ram and I combine well. So to win a medal is fine,” said Saketh.

When reminded about the support that athletes are getting from India for winning medals and doing well, the eyes of Ramkumar and Saketh lit up. “Yes, it is nice to know people are celebrating the medals and our performances. I have been around for a long time and it is good to keep going,” Saketh told this writer.

For Ramkumar, this was his first Asian Games medal. “The first Asian Games medal, yes, it is big for me. I guess winning for the country is different,” he said.

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(R) From left: Ramkumar Ramanathan, Coach Zeeshan Ali, and Saketh Myneni (Via @AITA__Tennis/X)

On a day when Jungh and Hsu from Chinese Taipei played solid tennis from the backcourt and also at the net, they did not give away too many chances. Their serves were really strong, rifling in the first and second. At the net, to display volleys and punch holes between Ramkumar and Saketh was good doubles strategy.

“I think the difference was their serve. We tried hard in the second set though,” added Ramkumar. This was India’s first tennis medal at the Hangzhou Asian Games.

“Saketh and Ram finished their match last night. All week we have been playing night matches. There was no recovery time for them at all. I wonder what kind of scheduling this is,” said Zeeshan Ali, coach of the Indian team.

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