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AAI pair sends second-seeded PSPB duo packing

Ajmer, November 27 A pair comprising junior players, Yashaswini Ghorpade and Vanshika Bhargava, from the Airports Authority of India (AAI) taught a few lessons on tenacity to the second-seeded duo of Krittwika Sinha Roy and Mousumi Paul from PSPB before entering the quarterfinals of the 49th Inter-Institutional Table Tennis Championships at the MCC Indoor Stadium here today.

The AAI combine, with a remarkable comeback, defeated the PSPB pair 3-2 and will next take on No. 7 seeds Mamata Prabhu and Senhora D’Souza of Bank of Baroda Sports Control Board tomorrow.

Fortunately, all other seeded combinations made it to the quarters, but both the No 3. Seeds Amrutha Pushpak and Nikhat Banu of RBI and No. 4 Shruti Amrute and Sagarika Mukherjee, respectively, survived to stay in the hunt after they were taken the full distance by their opponents.

Yashaswini, who was selected to represent India in the World Cadet Challenge in Poland last month, and her partner Vanshika were hopelessly placed after the first two games with the renowned PSPB players putting them in all kinds of pressure with a 2-0 lead.

But the AAI duo resurrected itself and slowly clawed their way back after making it 2-2. In the decider, it was touch and go at deuce but Yashaswini and Vanshika converted the last two crucial points to send their opponents packing.

No. 3 seeds Amrutha and Nikhat were comfortably placed at 2-1 but surprisingly let Prajakta Tipale and Mrunmayee Mhatre from LIC pair take the fourth game. That brought them back in some big trouble but the third-seeded duo stopped their opponents to win 3-2. It was a similar case for the left-right combination of Shruti and Sagarika from the Railways as the No. 4 seeds had to really fight in the decider to stop both Hely Shah and Garima Goyal of CRSB.

In men’s doubles, all the top eight seeded pairs stormed into the pre-quarterfinals and the third seeds from PSPB, Sourav Saha and Jeet Chandra did not have to enter the area as their rivals from Major Ports, Soumik De Sarkar and Manoj Mandal, gave a walkover. The top-seeds, Sanil Shetty and Sudhanshu Grover accounted for Arnab Sarkar and Souvik Banerjee from West Bengal 11-8, 11-9, 11-7 while second-seeded AAI duo of Sushmit Sriram and Akash Pal defeated Soham Bhattacharya and A. Sen Choudhary of Canara Bank 11-7, 11-3, 11-2. And, as was to be expected, all other seeded pairs had easy passage into the round of 16.


Women’s Doubles (PQF): Ahyhika Mukherjee/Sreeja Akula (PSPB) bt Eesha Joshi/Poulami Das (AI) 11-7, 8-11, 11-3, 11-8; Surbhi Patwari/Munmun Kundu (AAI) bt Frenaz Chipia/Shanmathi Satyamoorthy (FCI) 11-8, 12-10, 11-7; Pooja Sahasrabudhe/Anika Das (PSPB) bt Sayani Bose/Shailu Noorbasha (MC&IT) 11-5, 11-39-11, 11-9; Shruti Amrute/Sagarika Mukherjee (RSPB) bt Hely Shah/Garima Goyal (CRSB) 11-8, 9-11, 11-4, 5-11, 11-6; Amrutha Pushpak/Nikhat Banu (RBI) bt Prajakta Tipale/Mrunmayee Mhatre (LIC) 11-13, 11-9, 11-6, 10-12, 11-9; Kaushani Nath/Moumita Dutta (RSPB) bt Manisha Seal/Sangita Mahadani (MC&IT) 11-9, 11-5, 10-12, 11-8; Mamata Prabhu/Senhora D’Souza (BBSCB) bt Riti Shankar/Sanya Sehgal (Har) 11-4, 11-8, 11-7; Yahaswini Ghorpade/Vanshika Bhargava (AAI) bt Mousumi Paul/Krittwika Sinha Roy (PSPB) 10-12, 9-11, 11-6, 11-8, 12-10.

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