Delhi’s Payas Jain and Maharashtra’s Diya Chitale claimed the season’s maiden titles in the Sub-Junior category of the 11Even Sports National Ranking (West Zone) Table Tennis Championships at the Veer Savarkar Municipal Corporation Stadium here today.
In the process, in all-Delhi Boys final, Payas beat Yashansh Malik 4-1 while Diya stopped Anusha Kutumble from Madhya Pradesh 4-2 from winning the third consecutive Girls’ crown.
Payas and Yashansh, good friends off the table, know each other well and have beaten each other in Delhi State events. But Payas was not the one to let go his first opportunity this year and deservingly won.
Indeed, Payas was the better paddler on view today, executing his shots to perfection. In fact, he hit a nice rhythm straightaway and looked like wrapping it up 4-0 but for his folly of hurrying with the shots in the third. Yashansh won the game on extended points. Payas quickly realized his mistgake and became more clinical in the next two to take home the cash and the glittering trophy.
On the other hand, Diya was picture perfect in the first two games and it unnerved Anusha to the extent that she made a lot of unforced errors. But Diya executed her shots with finesse and employed more of her backhand. Her forehand blistering shots and clever use of angles with good anticipation, too, helped her score more winners than her MP rival. However Anusha tried to make a comeback, Diya was at it to force her on the back foot.
TAMIL NADU’S CADET SWEEP
In what was an all-Tamil Nadu and left-handers final in Cadet Boys, Preyesh completed a hat-trick of titles this season beating Tarun Shanmugam 4-0. Preyesh, who showed consistency in the North and Central Zone events earlier, continued his winning ways with an easy win over his state mate, Tarun.
But Kavyashree Baskar, also from Tamil Nadu, upstaged Haryana’s Suhana Saini to deny her a hat-trick of crowns in Cadet Girls with a 4-0 triumph. Suhana had won the titles at Chandigarh and Indore this season. Kavyashree, who has had a very good season last year, came back nicely to wrest the initiative from the Haryana girl.
After a comfortable 3-0 lead, Kavyashree lost two match points in the fourth when Suhana, with a brilliant fight back, won her first 13-11. Again, in the next, the Haryana youngster saved a match point to put pressure on the TN girl. But it was the sixth, which saw some long rallies, that Suhana showed her real colours—she was down 1-7—but went 10-9 up. However, a bad return cost her dear as Kavyashree deuced and on her first match point in the game, she clinched the title.
It was, indeed, a heartbreak for Suhana but credit to her that she made the final worth a while to watch.
The Sub-Junior Boys final will see yet another clash of two Delhi boys, Payas Jain and Yashansh Malik, both thick friends outside the court. Payas accounted for Shreyans Goel, also of Delhi, 4-1 while Yashansh defeated Hrishikesh Malhotra from Maharashtra by the same margin.
But it was the Girls semifinals that pushed the spectators to the edge of the seat, thanks to the never-say-die attitude of Tanisi Kirtani of Goa and Swastika Ghosh of Maharashtra.
Anusha, gunning for her third successive title, did not have any respite once Tanisi levelled 3-3 after winning the sixth game 12-10. But then Anusha’s experience held her in good stead as she closed out quickly on her Goa opponent in the decider. More or less a similar script was enacted by Swastika but Diya proved a hard nut to crack in the decider.
Earlier, a notable performance from Tamil Nadu’s Nithyashree Mani grabbed the attention of the audience. The little girl from Chennai Achievers Club, currently training under Subin Kumar, made her maiden quarterfinal appearance, slaying along the way some promising paddlers in the Sub-Junior section. Unfortunately, she ran into Maharashtra’s Swastika who beat the TN girl 12-10, 11-5, 11-5, before being packed off by Diya in the semifinals.
Earlier, Preyesh Suresh Raj and Suhan Saini were on way to adding another title in Cadet Boys and Girls categories when they beat in the semifinals Sujan Bharadwaj and Nehal Suriyanarayanan in straight games. They will take on in the final Tamil Nadu’s Tarun Shanmugam and Kavyashree Baskar who accounted for Navaneet Kutty, also of Tamil Nadu, and Prithoki Chakraborti of West Bengal.
Sub-Junior Boys: Final: Payas Jain (Del) bt Yashansh Malik (Del) 11-9, 11-5, 11-13, 11-9, 11-5; Semifinals: Payas Jain bt Shreyans Goel (Del) 11-8, 11-4, 10-12, 11-6, 12-10, Yashansh Malik bt Hrishikesh Malhotra (Mah) 11-7, 11-9, 5-11, 11-5, 11-3.
Sub-Junior Girls: Final: Diya Chitale (Mah) bt Anusha Kutumbale (MP) 11-9, 11-7, 6-11, 10-12, 12-10, 11-9; Semifinals: Anusha Kutumbale bt Tanisi Kirtani (Goa) 6-11, 11-9, 11-9, 8-11, 11-7, 10-12, 11-7, Diya Chitale bt Swastika Ghosh (Mah) 8-11, 11-7, 11-6, 9-11, 13-11, 7-11, 11-6.
Cadet Boys: Final: Preyesh Suresh Raj (TN) bt Tarun Shanmugam (TN) 11-8, 11-3,11-7, 11-9; Semifinals: Preyesh Suresh Raj bt Sujan Bharadwaj (KNT) 11-9, 13-11, 11-7, Tarun Shanmugam bt Navaneet Kutty (TN) 11-7, 4-11, 11-7, 11-4.
Cadet Girls: Final: Kavyashree Baskar (TN) bt Suhana Saini (Har) 11-8, 11-8, 11-7, 11-13, 10-12, 12-10; Semifinals: Suhana Saini bt Nehal Suriyanarayanan (TN) 11-5, 11-4, 12-10, Kavyashree Baskar bt Prithoki Chakraborti (WB) 11-7, 11-2, 11-6.
Source : Indian Sports News