Indian women team finish 8th in Asian TT, men vie for 7-8 spot
Busan (Korea): Indian women finished a disappointing eighth after losing to Malaysia 1-3 in the team`s event while male paddlers went down 2-3 against Singapore in the Asian TT Championships here on Tuesday.
The Indian eves did not show enough stomach for a fight and lost their 7th-8th play-off match to their much-fancied opponent.
The men`s team put up a brave show against mighty Singaporeans and fought neck and neck before losing their 5th-8th position tie. They will now play Iran for 7th-8th classification match on Wednesday.
The women`s team, which had topped its Pool to qualify for the Champion Division that consisted of top-eight sides, were thrashed 0-3 by Chinese Taipei earlier on Tuesday before going down to Malaysia. They had lost their quarterfinal match to China 0-3 on Monday night.
In the men`s event, promising Soumyajit Ghosh (170) gave his team an excellent start as he upset Zi Yang (107) in a five-game contest. Ghosh won 11-9, 8-11, 11-7, 3-11, 11-5.
However, ace Indian paddler Achantha Sharath Kamal (68) could not emulate his young teammate`s feat and was easily beaten 6-11, 10-12, 7-11 by Gao Ning (15).
Anthony Amalraj (158) though had no problems in brushing aside the challenge of Zhe Yu Clarence Chew 11-8, 7-11, 11-7, 11-7 to put India ahead 2-1.
Ghosh, in the reverse match, put on another fantastic show against Ning as he came from two games down to level the issue but in the decider, Ning stamped his authority to settle the issue 11-4, 11-8, 11-13, 10-12, 11-5 in his favour.
Sharath Kamal seemed out of sorts as he lost 9-11, 6-11, 8-11 to a lower-ranked Yang to dash the Indian hopes.
In the women`s tie, India got off to a poor start against Malaysia as seasoned Mouma Das (195) was comprehensively beaten 4-11, 10-12, 4-11 by Sock Khim NG (219). K Shamini (261) too failed to match up her opponent Lee Wei Beh (217) and went down tamely 7-11, 6-11, 5-11, giving Malaysia a 2-0 lead.
However, Neha Aggarwal (373) pulled one back after polishing off a lower-ranked opponent Hie Phin Ting (551) 11-5, 11-6, 11-9, raising hopes of a comeback but the joy for Indian contingent was shortlived as Shamini lost to Sock Khim 7-11, 15-13, 6-11, 6-11 to finish last in the division.
Chinese women emerged champions in the team`s championship.
Chief national coach Bhawani Mukherjee expressed happiness with the team`s performance.
"Our boys played well. Especially Ghosh was impressive. He was on top of his game. Amalraj was also good. It was unfortunate that Sharath lost in the fifth match. I think the pressure got to him," Mukherjee said.
"Had we beaten Singapore, we wouldn`t have to qualify for Champion Division next year," he added.