KATHMANDU, Jan 30: The Ninth Nationwide Krishna Mohan Memorial Open Badminton Tournament kicked off at the Armed Police Force (APF) Headquarters, Halchowk on Wednesday along with the Fifth APF Open Lawn Tennis Tournament.
National Sports Council (NSC) Member Secretary Yuvaraj Lama inaugurated the tournaments, which will conclude on Monday, by handing over shuttlecock and lawn tennis ball to badminton referee Laba Bhakta Shrestha and tennis coach Krishna Raj Ghale respectively.
In his inaugural speech, Lama said APF has been making significant contribution to Nepali sports ever since its establishment about a decade ago and the departmental team´s players have left their mark in national and international tournaments.
The six-day badminton tournament, organized in the memory of late Inspector General of APF, Krishna Mohan Shrestha, carries a total cash prize of Rs 375,000 and includes competitions in eight categories.
Praful Maharjan (Photo: Bijay Rai)
Altogether 491 players, including 64 women, will compete in men´s singles, women´s singles, men´s doubles, women´s doubles, mixed doubles, above 45 and 55 veterans´ doubles, U-17 boys´ and girls´ singles and inter-governmental service masters doubles (above 35 and 45) during the tournament.
Meanwhile, the tennis tournament carries a purse of Rs 245,000 and includes six events -- men´s singles, women´s singles, men´s doubles, mixed doubles, veterans´ doubles and singles (above 35 and 45 years) and inter-governmental service. Altogether 291 players, including 38 women, will compete in the tournament.
On the opening day of the badminton tournament, Gokul Tamang of Kathmandu beat Min Bahadur Basnet of Tribhuvan Army Club 21-13, 21-12 in the men´s singles category. Likewise, Gyanendra Paudel of Chitwan saw off Buddhi Basnet of Dang 21-16, 21-9 in the first round while Mahendra Dhakal of Gorkha defeated Tej Raj Sharma of APF 21-17, 21-8.
In other first round matches, Rabindra Bhujel of Nuwakot registered a 21-12, 21-5 win over Dinesh Raj Sharma of KMC,Shambhu Prasad Yadav of Dhanusha beat Manish Mahara of Kapilvastu 21-11, 21-11 and Dil Bahadur Dhami of APF edged out Gyanendra Paudel of Chitwan 21-13, 12-21, 21-20.
Meanwhile, Mohan Jung Shah of Bajura, Prabin Khanal of Butwal and Raju Bajracharya of Lalitpur earned walkovers.
Avigya Karki (Photo: Bijay Rai)
In the first round tennis matches, Kiran Jung Kunwar of NPC thrashed Bhishma Kanta Aryal of APF 6-1, 6-2 in the inter-governmental service category. Likwise, Rishav Dev Bhattarai of APF beat Jitendra Karmacharya 6-3, 6-2 and Chandra Bahadur Thapa of Army beat Suraj Kumar Shrestha of APF 6-3, 6-3.
Narendra Kumar Singh, Gunjan Pratap Malla and Chet Singh Thapa of APF, Niranjan Shrestha and Caesar Gurung of Army had an easy passage to the second round as they received walkovers.