PBL 5: Lakshya Sen, Tommy Sugiarto Guide Chennai Superstarz to Second Straight Win

Lakshya Sen (L) and Tommy Sugiarto. (Photo Credit: PBL)

Lakshya Sen (L) and Tommy Sugiarto. (Photo Credit: PBL)

Premier Badminton League 2020: Chennai Superstarz defeated Mumbai Rockets 4-3 for second straight win at home.

Chennai: Lakshya Sen and Tommy Sugiarto won their singles while Dhruv Kapila and Jessica Pugh triumphed in mixed doubles to take Chennai Superstarz to a 4-3 victory against Mumbai Rockets on Day 3 of the Premier Badminton League 2020 at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Chennai on Wednesday. Having started the fifth season of PBL on a winning note, the Chennai franchise has now built a two-match unbeaten streak.

The Chennai shuttler, Lakshya had never met World No.49 Lee Dong Keun before but that mattered little as the World No.30 was at the top of his game throughout the match against the Mumbai ace. The 18-year-old was made to work hard for his win in Chennai's first tie on Monday but this time he looked more comfortable.

In a solid display that showed his maturity, Sen produced an array of smashes to take the first game away from the Korean. Having won five titles in 2019, Sen was confident. The second game too went the same way with the Indian stamping his authority right from the start to secure a 15-12, 15-10 win for the Superstarz.

In a riveting match that was also the Trump for the hosts, former World Championships bronze medallist Tommy Sugiarto stormed back after losing the first game to edge Mumbai's Parupalli Kashyap 14-15, 15-10, 15-7. The two haven't met on the BWF World Tour since 2012 with the Indonesian having a slight edge of 4-3 in their rivalry.

He faltered initially with Kashyap eking out a hard-fought opening game 15-14. But the Chennai ace found his rhythm soon after and rebounded for a 14-15, 15-10, 15-7 victory. With that being a Trump win, Chennai Superstarz wrapped up the tie without any hassle.

Earlier, Dhruv Kapila and Jessica Pugh played an outstanding match to upset the much-fancied Mumbai Rockets pair of Pia Zebadiah and Kim Gi Jung 15-10, 15-14. The second game was a test of nerves for both but the Chennai duo emerged with flying colours under pressure.

The men's doubles Trump pair of Kim Gi Jung and Kim Sa Rang brought the first win of the day for the Mumbai brigade. The Koreans never took their feet off the pedal and sailed away to a 15-9, 15-12 win against Dhruv Kapila and Sumeeth Reddy.

In an exciting face-off between two Indian women's singles youngsters, Mumbai's Shreyanshi Pardeshi showed her grit and resilience to record a 14-15, 15-5, 15-13 win over Chennai's Gayatri Gopichand.


MX: Dhruv Kapila-Jessica Pugh 15-10, 15-14 Pia Zebadiah-Kim Gi Jung

MS: Lakshya Sen 15-12, 15-10 Lee Dong Keun

MS: Tommy Sugiarto 14-15, 15-10, 15-7 Parupalli Kashyap

MD: Dhruv Kapila-Sumeeth Reddy 9-15, 12-15 Kim Gi Jung-Kim Sa Rang

WS: Gayatri Gopichand 15-14, 5-15, 13-15 Shreyanshi Pardeshi