IBL: Ponnappa- Nielsen defeat Gutta- Kien 19-21, 21-16, 11-3

Zee Media Bureau

New Delhi: In what was a major upset in the inaugural Indian Badminton League (IBL), Pune Pistons’ JF Nielsen and Ashwini Ponnappa defeated Delhi Smashers’ Koo Kien and Jwala Gutta 19-21, 21-16 and 11-3.

Nielsen-Ponnappa started the match on a confident note and won the first set 21-19 after a bit of struggle. Kien-Gutta were up for the second set and they showed some great display and bounced back to win it 21-16.

But in the decider, Ponnappa and her partner cruised to victory within no time and stunned their opponents with some aggressive play, and won it 11-3.

Earlier, the much-awaited tournament kicked off with a glittering opening ceremony even as Krrish Delhi Smashers clashed with the Pune Pistons in the tournament opener.

It was a colourful show of laser lights, acrobatics, Bollywood songs and dance as the half-an-hour opening ceremony started the proceedings at the Siri Fort Sports complex.

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