Monday, June 24, 2024

Tamil Nadu women dethrone PSPB, to meet top seed RBI for the honours

The Tamil Nadu squad that stunned PSPB in the semifinals of the UTT-Senior National and inter-State table tennis championships in Jammu on Wednesday, March 22.

The Tamil Nadu squad that stunned PSPB in the semifinals of the UTT-Senior National and inter-State table tennis championships in Jammu on Wednesday, March 22.
| Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

Tamil Nadu women pulled off a major coup by outplaying defending champion Petroleum Sports Promotion Board (PSPB) 3-1 in the semifinals of the UTT-Senior National and inter-State table tennis championships here on Wednesday. TN will take on RBI in the summit clash.

The major credit for TN’s victory should go to S. Yashini and V. Kowshika, who defeated Manika Batra, India’s top-ranked paddler, in the first and fourth rubbers respectively.

The 21-year-old, frail-looking Kowshika played an attacking game from the start, knowing pretty well that she had nothing to lose. Whatever Manika threw at her, it came back. Kowshika was exemplary in the fifth and deciding game, winning it 11-5.

Yashini defeated Reeth Rishya in five games to give TN a 2-0 lead. However, PSPB pulled one back when Archana Kamath defeated B. Kavyasree. Yashini closed out the match with a commanding performance against Manika in the fourth.

“It is a huge win. All credit to our girls, who come from the same club (Jawahar TT Academy) in Chennai,” said TN women’s team coach V.S. Rajan to The Hindu.

The results (semifinals):

Men: PSPB bt Delhi 3-0 (Manav Thakkar bt Payas Jain 11-9, 11-4, 11-5; G. Sathiyan bt Sudhanshu Grover 11-6, 11-8, 8-11, 11-1; Harmeet Desai bt Yashansh Malik 7-11, 11-8, 12-10, 11-3).

RSPB bt Telangana 3-2 (Ronit Bhanja bt Mohammed Ali 11-5, 6-11, 11-4, 11-7; Anirban Ghosh lost to SFR Snehit 9-11, 5-11, 12-10, 11-7, 5-11; Akash Pal bt Vansh Singhal 12-10, 11-8, 11-5; Ronit lost to Snehit 9-11, 3-11, 8-11; Anirban Ghosh bt Mohammed Ali 11-5, 11-9, 11-9).

Women: RBI bt Delhi 3-1 (Sreeja Akula lost to Lakshita Narang 11-5, 11-8, 5-11, 5-11, 4-11; Ayhika Mukherjee bt Vanshika Bhargava 11-6, 11-4, 9-11, 11-8; Diya Chitale bt Tamanna Saini 11-3, 11-6, 11-8; Sreeja bt Vanshika 11-6, 11-9, 11-7).

Tamil Nadu bt PSPB3-1 (V. Kowshika bt Manika Batra 11-8, 9-11, 11-8, 7-11, 11-5; S. Yashini bt Reeth Rishya 3-11, 11-8, 11-5, 10-12, 11-5; B. Kavyashree lost to Archana Kamath 7-11, 5-11, 11-8, 11-5, 2-11; Yashini bt Manika Batra 11-6, 11-8, 11-8).

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