Indian Badminton League, 1st semi-final: Hyderabad Hotshots vs Pune Pistons - As it happened


Zee Media Bureau

Hyderabad: Hosts Hyderabad Hotshots defeated Pune Pistons 3-0 in the first semi-final of the Indian Badminton League on their home ground at the Gachibowli Indoor Stadium on Wednesday.

Hyderabad have advanced to the final in emphatic style. Led by Saina Nehwal's fighting spirit, Hyderabad won three matches on the trot and routed Pune in the first semi-final.



Match 3, men’s doubles: Shem Goh & Wah Lim of Hyderabad Hotshots vs Joachim Fischer Nielsen & Sanave Thomas of Pune Pistons

Result: Shem Goh/ Wah Lim defeated Joachim Fischer Nielsen / Sanave Thomas 16-21, 21-14, 11-7

Hyderabad Hotshots were leading 7-4 in the decider and they extended it to 8-4 with a powerful smash. The Pune pair misjudged a rally as the shuttle fell between them and Hyderabad lead went upto 9-4. Pune were trying too many shots as a result of which they lost another point that gave Hyderabad six match points at 10-4. Pune saved a match point there when Hyderabad lost a point as the shuttle went wide. A powerful smash saved another match point for Pune, 6-10 was the score. Pune saved third match point as the result of a good serve from, 7-10. But Hyderabad emerged victorious as they won the game 11-7.


Match 2, women’s singles: Hyderabad Hotshots’ Saina Nehwal vs Pune Pistons’ Julian Schenk

RESULT: Saina won the match 21-10, 19-21, 11-8

Game 3

Saina got a standing ovation by the crowd.

Juliane saved two match points. 10-8 before Saina ended the match with a down the line smash. 11-8.

After a long rally, match point for Saina. 10-6.

Saina took two point lead at the end of the break. 6-2.

Long rally once again, Saina was leading 3-2.

Scores level 2-2.

After both the players started the decider with aggression, Saina led 2-1.

Game 2

Juliane bounced back and took the set from Saina, who was dominant in major part of the set. Score: 21-19.

Just when the match was going in Saina’s favour Juliane made a dramatic comeback and won six successive points and levelled the score 18-18.

With the crowd cheering for their local hope, Saina has extended her lead to 18-12.

Saina looked in control of the match at 16-9. She put up some good display of cross court smashes in the match.

Juliane looked frustrated as Saina took the lead to 14-8.

At the end of break, Saina leads 7-6.

After one of the best rallies of the tournament so far with brilliant shot making by both players, Juliane took the point. 6-5. Saina levels the score with next shot. 6-6.

Juliane made sure that second set is not a cake walk for Saina. She is giving her a tough fight. Score level 5-5

Juliane played some good shots and took the second set lead to 3-0, before Saina came back and took four successive points to take the score to 4-3.

Game 1

Game point for Saina at 20-8. Saina took the first set 21-10.

Saina clearly dominated the first set. With good deception shots and smashes, she took the lead to 14-4.

The score was 5-2 as Saina began her game with aggressive shots. At 6-2, an error of judgement cost Saina, a point. The score was 6-3 but Saina took a quick 7-3 lead.

The second match will be the women singles. Saina Nehwal will look forward to take the Hyderabad Hotshots lead to 2.


Match 1, men’s singles: Hyderabad Hotshots’ Ajay Jayaram vs Pune Pistons’ Tien Minh Nguyen

Result: Ajay Jayaram won the match 21-17, 21-11

Even though Minh showed some aggression after the second break, Jayaram had reached 18-7 within no time. Jayaram had ten match points at 20-10, and Minh saved a match point after a terrific rally, 11-20. But that was it and Jayaram finally won the second game 21-11. Hyderabad Hotshots lead the tie 1-0.

Jayaram made a confident start in the second game with a lead at 5-0. Yinh won his first point of the second game at 1-5 and Jayaram won the next two to take a formidable lead of 7-1 at the first break. Jayaram further extended his lead to 12-4, with an eight-point lead. Yinh continued to make several unforced errors and Jayaram was leading 14-2 at the second break.

Jayaram was back in his rhythm after the second break and was leading 17-15. He further extended his lead to 19-15 with a powerful cross court smash. Both the players won a point each and then Jayaram won the next point to have four game points at 20-16. Yinh saved the first game point as Jayaram’s shot hit the nets, 17-20. Jayaram won the first game 21-17 after Yinh’s shot went long.

The score was 9-9 after the first break as both the players played some good shots. Jayaram made a few errors after which Yinh was leading the first game 12-9. Jayaram won two consecutive points there and reduced the lead to 11-13. Jayaram won a close call and further reduced the lead to 12-13, and Yinh made another error of judgement when the score became 13-13. Jayaram’s return of serve went wide after which Yinh was leading 14-13 at the second break.

The score was 3-3 as both the players played some aggressive strokes initially to dictate terms. Minh then took a three-point lead at 6-3. Jayaram bounced back with an accurate down the line smash, and reduced the lead at 5-6. The score was 6-6 at one stage but Jayaram was leading 7-6 at the first break as he won his seventh point with a smash!


08:04 pm The players are on the court and are busy discussing their strategies.

7:55 pm Another interesting move by Hyderabad Hotshots. Their star player Saina Nehwal will also play in mixed doubles match.

According to an interesting update, the result of the tie in semis will be a best of five. So the teams need to bring their best players in the first three matches to take a fomidable lead.

The Hyderabad franchise would be very proud of Saina Nehwal, who remains unbeaten in the tournament. The Indian shuttler was given a tough fight by Banga Beats’ Tai Tzu Ying, but Saina used all her experience to win the match 21-17, 14-21, 11-8.

Saina has been the driving for her franchise and the team would want her to put another good show in the semis. Read our analysis:

Can Saina continue her winning streak?»

Meanwhile, Juliane will seek her third match defeat revenge from Saina.

Juliane Schenk will be keen for revenge against Saina»


After losing to India`s latest sensation PV Sindhu, Danish great Tine Baun has raised an interesting debate on the type of shuttles used in the competition. She blamed her defeat on the fast shuttles. To join the debate, read the complete story

IBL shuttles too fast for players` comfort?»


Brief Summary of Day 12:

Banga Beats defeated Hosts Hyderabad Hotshots 3-2 on their home ground at the Gachibowli Indoor Stadium on Day 12 of the Indian Badminton League.It began with a tough match and it ended with one. Parupalli Kashyap of Banga Beats lost to Tanongsak Saensomboonsuk in straight sets but not before the Indian star gave a tough fight. The men’s singles match was followed by the women’s singles match where Saina Nehwal was given a neck-to-neck fight by Tai Tzu Ying before Saina won the match 21-17, 14-21, 11-8.

After four matches, the tie was leveled at 2-2 and it took a fifth match to decide the winner for the 12th Day of the Indian Badminton League. Carsten Mogensen and Aparna Balan of Banga Beats played a superb match where they were a set down, but overcame all the pressure to win the match and the tie for Banga Beats -18-21, 21-18, 11-9. Banga Beats haven’t made it to the semis but they can for sure leave with their heads held high.