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Sharath Kamal stars as Chennai Lions Edge Out Goa Challengers in Ultimate Table Tennis

Ultimate Table Tennis 2019: Sharath Kamal won both his men's singles and mixed doubles clashes as Chennai Lions beat Goa Challengers 8-7.

News18 Sports

Updated:July 31, 2019, 10:12 PM IST
Sharath Kamal stars as Chennai Lions Edge Out Goa Challengers in Ultimate Table Tennis
Sharath Kamal won four of the eight points that took Chennai Lions to victory. (Photo Credit: @UltTableTennis)

New Delhi: India's star player Sharath Kamal used his bag of experience to give Chennai Lions a nerve-wracking 8-7 victory over Goa Challengers in Ultimate Table Tennis at the Thyagaraj Stadium in New Delhi on Wednesday.

The world No. 32 first partnered a shaky Petrissa Solja to collect two crucial mixed doubles points for his side and then he absorbed a big scare from Amalraj Anthony to add two more into the team's kitty in the reverse men's singles.

His 4 points, coupled with 2 from Portugal's Tiago Apolonia and 1 from Petrissa, meant that the Lions needed only 1 more point in the fifth and final clash.

The final women's singles, featuring two Indians, saw Madhurika Patkar steal that solitary point against a rampaging Archana Kamath to seal the win for the Lions. Madhurika lost 1-2 but pumped her fist in delight at saving the day for her team.

Earlier, Goa's Cheng I-Ching too survived a minor scare to put her side ahead in the opening women's singles. The world No. 8 from Taiwan spurted to a big 6-0 lead in the first, only to see Petrissa claw back into the game, allowing it to go all the way to 10-10.

Cheng, however, unleashed a powerful forehand to clinch the crucial golden point and the first point for her team.

She was on song in the second set, though, racing away to a commanding 9-1 lead. She conceded only one more point to give herself a nice big win.

The final set, however, saw a different story unfold. Petrissa played a steady game to win it 11-6, tossing one point into the Lions bag.

In an all-European men's singles clash, Portugal's Tiago Apolonia put up a dominant display to bring the Lions back into the game. Tiago pulled out his big shots to unsettle Alvaro Robles of Spain.

Tiago won the first set 11-5 but lost his way in the next, capitulating to a 2-11 defeat. He, however, regained his composure to clinch the third set 11-7.

In the crucial mixed doubles, Sharath and Petrissa fell behind straight away, losing to Amalraj Anthony and Cheng I-Ching 9-11 in the first set. Sharath, however, went on the offensive to collect crucial points to set up a 11-6 win in the second set.

The decider was a humdinger, with Sharath-Petrissa conceding the early advantage. They, however, fought back from 4-8 down to make it 10-10, before claiming the golden point.

In the reverse men's singles, Sharath once again began on the backfoot, giving away the first set rather easily at 2-11. He however came back to his usual attacking self, jumping to a 6-1 lead in the second and then held on to the advantage to close it 11-9.

In the decider, he was well poised at 10-6 but Amalraj, looking as cool as is possible in a cauldron, made it 10-10. It suddenly became a tense encounter, ending with Sharath's slow, low serve which brooked no response from Amalraj.


Women's Singles: Petrissa Solja lost to Cheng I-Ching 1-2 (10-11, 2-11, 11-6)

Men's Singles: Tiago Apolonia bt Alvaro Robles 2-1 (11-5, 2-11, 11-7)

Mixed Doubles: Sharath Kamal & Petrissa Solja bt Amalraj Anthony & Cheng I-Ching 2-1 (9-11, 11-6, 11-10)

Men's Singles: Sharath Kamal bt Amalraj Anthony 2-1 (2-11, 11-9, 11-10)

Women's Singles: Madhurika Patkar lost to Archana Kamath 1-2 (9-11, 10-11, 11-8)

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