Mouma shines for hosts in Commonwealth TT, bags silver
New Delhi: India`s Mouma Das bagged a silver medal in the mixed doubles event while entering the semifinals of the singles and doubles competition, to round off a sparkling day for the hosts at the 19th Commonwealth Table Tennis Championships here on Thursday.
The day ensured six more medals besides the silver claimed by Mouma at the Thyagaraj stadium.
Pairing up with fellow West Bengal paddler Soumyajit Ghosh, the duo was outclassed by Singapore`s Jian Zhan and Yihan Zhou in straight games in the final of the mixed event.
The Singaporean pair was dynamic in its approach. The second seed duo did not allow the Indians to settle into a rhythm and were fierce in their returns.
"They were simply too quick for us. I couldn`t match Jian Zhan`s pace. He was sending powerful returns that I couldn`t pick," said Mouma.
Earlier, they had blanked top seeded pair of Zi Yang and Mengyu Yu from Singapore 3-0 to set up the summit clash.
The 29-year-old Mouma defeated Joanna Parker of England to reach the last four stages of the singles event, which added to the joy of entering the semifinals of the women`s doubles.
The two paddlers, contrasting in their style of play, put on a display of long rallies. The attacking flair of the Indian saw her prevail over her 135th ranked opponent 4-1.
"I am happy with the way I played today. But, I just don`t want to stop here. I want to win gold," Mouma had said.
Achantha Sharath Kamal (70) will be India`s flag bearer in the last four matches of men`s singles event while the other three will be from Singapore.
Kamal saw off Zi Yang (98) from Singapore 4-3 in a battle that went down to the wire. Despite being 2-0 ahead, the Indian squandered the initiative in the next three games to go down 2-3.
A gritty Kamal then made a great comeback in the subsequent games to secure a semifinal spot. Kamal won the match 11-3 11-7 9-11 9-11 8-11 11-8 11-8.
The pair of Kamal and Subhajit Saha will look to defend the men`s doubles title as they meet England`s Christopher Doran and Samuel Walker in the semifinals.
In the women`s doubles, the pair of Mouma and K Shamini had no problems fending off the Malaysian pair of Wei Lee Beh and Khim Sock NG in the quarterfinals.
The hosts will have another final contender in Madhurika Patkar and Neha Aggarwal, who sailed over the inexperienced Indian pair of Pooja Sahasrabudhe and Divya Deshpande 3-0.
Reigning national champion Soumyajit Ghosh was flattened by world no 25 from Singapore. Jian Zhan showed his experience and superior skills to reign over Ghosh (187) in the second round of the singles event.
Earlier, Jubin Kumar`s surge was halted in the quarterfinals by Hu Li (55) of Singapore. Kumar (497) had a great first match as he humbled Liang Ma (174) of Singapore 4-3. He then rounded off a well-deserved win over England Christopher Doran 4-1 to reach the last eight stage where he was knocked out.
Manika Batra too sealed a spot in the semifinals after beating compatriot Pooja Sahasrabudhe 4-1.