Chennai, 17 July 2017: Oilmax Stag Yoddhas led Shazé Challengers 7-5 after four gripping matches in their ongoing tie in the CEAT Ultimate Table Tennis (UTT) at a packed Nehru Indoor Stadium in Chennai on Monday.
Soumyajit Ghosh put Shazé Challengers ahead with a stunning 2-1 victory over Nigerian world No 29 Aruna Quadri of Oilmax Stag Yoddhas in the men’s singles (Indian v Foreign), the opening match of the day.
World no. 85 Ghosh cruised to a 11-2 win in the opening game before Quadri staged a strong comeback to win the second at 11-9.
The Nigerian jumped to a 7-2 lead in the third before the Indian rallied brilliantly to turn the contest on its head, taking the lead at 8-7 before winning the game at 11-8.
China-born German world No. 9 Han Ying extended Shazé Challengers’ lead to 4-2 with a 2-1 win over Manika Batra of Oilmax Stag Yoddhas in the women’s singles (Foreign v Indian).
Indian world No. 104 Manika pulled off a surprise win in the opening game 11-8, before experienced Ying regained control take the next at 11-5 and was pushed to the limit before holding on to win the third game on the golden point (11-10).
In a turn in fortune, Oilmax Stag Yoddhas’ mixed doubles (Indian/Foreign) pair of Abhishek Yadav / Doo Hoi Kem (HK) routed Shazé Challengers’ pair of Soumyajit / Petrissa Solja (Germany) 3-0 (11-10. 11-9, 11-6) to help their side edge ahead on points at 5-4.
Oilmax Stag Yoddhas’ Quadri rallied from a game down to win his second match of the day, the men’s singles (foreign player category), against Croatia’s Andrej Gacina 2-1 (10-11, 11-6, 11-3) to put Oilmax Stag Yoddhas ahead 7-5 after four matches. Five more matches remain in the ongoing tie.
Meanwhile, Oilmax Stag Yoddhas’ top player Panagiotis Gionis (Greece, world No 19) has been ruled out of the remainder of the league due to an inflammation in heel and has been replaced by Croatia’s Tomislav Pucar.
On Tuesday, DHFL Maharashtra United will take on RP-SG Mavericks in what is the second outing for both.
Scoreline: Oilmax Stag Yoddhas 7-5 Shazé Challengers (at the end of four matches)
MS – Aruna Quadri vs Soumyajit Ghosh 1-2 (2-11, 11-9. 8-11)
WS – Manika Batra vs Han Ying 1-2 (11-8, 5-11, 10-11)
MD – Abhishek Yadav/ Doo Hoi Kem vs Soumyajit Ghosh/ Petrissa Solja 3-0 (11-10, 11-9, 11-6
MS – Aruna Quadri vs Andrej Gacina 2-1 (10-11, 11-6, 11-3)