Rupesh-Thomas pair reaches New Zealand Open final

Rupesh-Thomas pair reaches New Zealand Open final New Delhi: Indian men's doubles pair of Rupesh Kumar and Sanave Thomas notched up a straight-game win over Malaysian rivals Teik Chai Gan and Bin Shen Tan to cruise into the finals of the New Zealand Open Grand Prix badminton tournament in Auckland on Friday.

The top seeded Indian duo took just half an hour to beat the Malaysians 21-15, 21-14 in the semifinals today.

The duo, who also made the finals of last week's Australian Open Grand Prix, will fight for the title against the fourth seeded Japanese pair of Hirokatsu Hashimoto and Noriyasu Hirata, who beat second seeds Fernando Kurniawan and Lingga Lie of Indonesia 21-16, 17-21, 21-17 in another match.

However, it was curtains for the women's doubles combo of Aparna Balan and Shruti Kurian.

The Australian Open runners-up lost 19-21, 15-21 to top seeds Tsz Ka Chan and Ying Suet Tse of Hong Kong in a 27-minute battle.

Bureau Report