Hyderabad, Aug 27, 2013, PTI:
Bangalore team edges Hyderabad 3-2 but fail to make it to semifinals
Banga Beats produced a battling victory over Hyderabad Hotshots in the Indian Badminton League but their win came a bit late in the day as they made their exit from the tournament on Tuesday.
Down 0-2, the Bangalore outfit rallied to win 3-2 for their second victory in the league but it did not help them progress, as they needed to win 5-0.
Hyderabad, Awadhe Warriors, Pune Pistons and Mumbai Masters are the teams that will fight it out in the semifinals. Hyderabad will play Pune in the first semifinal here on Wednesday while Warriors play Mumbai in the second semi in Bangalore a day later.
Egged on by the home crowd, a Saina Nehwal-inspired Hotshots took an early 2-0 lead. Saina won her match 21-17 14-21 11-8 against Ying Tai Tzu, after Tanongsak Saensomboonsuk gave the hosts a cracking start by staving off the challenge of Parupalli Kashyap 21-20 21-18. But Banga Beats hit back through Carsten Mogensen and Akshay Dewalkar who defeated V Shem Goh and Khim Wah Lim of Hyderabad Hotshots 15-21 21-15 11-1 in the men's doubles to make it 1-2.
Jan Jorgensen of Banga Beats then drubbed Ajay Jayaram 21-11 21-8 in the second men's singles to put Banga Beats on level terms, pushing the tie to the deciding mixed doubles.
Banga Beats stood tall in the decider, with Carsten Mogensen and Aparna Balan defeating Tarun Kona and Pradnya Gadre 18-21 21-16 11-9 to pull their team through to a 3-2 verdict. Earlier, the Hotshots had taken a 1-0 lead after Saensomboonsuk defeated Kashyap to help his team qualify for the semifinals. And with Saina too winning, it enabled Hyderabad to reach the top of the points table.
Saina’s match against Tzu was the highlight for the crowd. After giving ample evidence of her touch in the first game, Saina went down easily in the second to give Bangalore a glimmer of hope. However, the third and final game belonged to Saina. The match was a treat of powerful smashes and rallies for the spectators as the two players sweated it out. Saina managed to move ahead and the score was 14-10 before Tzu managed to narrow the gap. However a few unforced errors proved costly for her and Saina succeeded in maintaining the lead. Saina’s deft play ensured that she pocketed it 21-17.
Tzu fought back in the second game. Long rallies followed before Tzu managed to wrest the level scores with a 21-14 verdict.
The decider was a keenly fought battle featuring powerful smashes and cross court shots with Saina taking the lead. Saina kept up the momentum and raced to victory.