After losing his final round qualifiers in three sets and spending Monday night fighting a mysterious bout of sinus trouble, Cambodia’s Long Samneang was given a break he least expected yesterday morning.
The 17-year-old right-hander got into the main draw of the ITF Junior tournament in the Indonesian city of Surabaya as a lucky loser and emerged from the first round as a gutsy winner.
Carrying a splitting headache and a runny nose onto the court, Long Samneang refused to allow these troubles to affect his resolve.
In a remarkable rearguard, he turned a first-set loss into a commanding win over Indonesia’s Rafidhiya Mohammed 5-7, 6-3, 6-2.
“I knew he was terribly sick and had a very rough night, but he played his heart out,” national team coach Braen Aneiros told the Post yesterday.
“He needed medical attention after the match and visited a clinic as well. After a day of rest and medication he should feel a lot better.”
The Cambodian Davis Cupper will play Taiwan’s Tung Lin Wu in the second round today.
“I had a conversation with Braen [Aneiros] on Samneang’s state of health. We were anxious when we learned about it.
But, amazingly, he has come out of it on the winning side. It speaks of his courage in adversity,” Tennis Federation of Cambodia secretary-general Tep Rithivit told the Post.
To contact the reporter on this story: H S Manjunath at [email protected]