The 76th senior national table tennis championship began on January 12th at the Rajiv Gandhi indoor stadium in Puducherry. The event has seen top Indian paddlers go head to head as they represented their respective states or sports boards.
The Petroleum Sports Promotion Board (PSPB) has been the most successful team of the tournament so far. On January 14, they bagged the men’s team championship also known as Barna Ballack cup after defeating West Bengal 3-0 in the finals. Interestingly, the women’s team also defeated the same opponents by the same margin to take the Jayalaxmi cup.
Men’s singles: Sathiyan, Ghosh enter semis, Jibin crashes out
Former national champion G Sathiyan of PSPB extended his good run of form as he entered the last 4 after beating Nitin Tiruvengadam in the quarterfinals. He won in dominating fashion, with a scoreline of 4 sets to nil. Soumyajit Ghosh and Harmeet Desai were other players from PSPB who made it to the semifinals. They defeated Jibin Kumar (Haryana) and Soumyadeep Roy (PSPB) respectively. Jibin Kumar, after upsetting the defending champion Sanil Shetty in the pre-quarters, went down 4-0 to his PSPB opponent. The last entrant in the semi-final draw was Raj Mondal of Reserve Bank of India (RBI) who defeated Abhishek Yadav of Rajasthan 4-1 in the quarters.
Men’s Singles (Quarterfinals): G. Sathiyan (PSPB) bt Nitin Thiruvengadam 4-0 ( 11-3, 11-4, 11-4, 11-8), Harmeet Desai (PSPB) bt Soumyadeep Roy (PSPB) 4-0 (12-10, 11-6, 11-4, 11-9), Soumyajit Ghosh (PSPB) bt Jibin Kumar (Har) 11-7, 11-9, 14-12, 11-5), Raj Mondal (RBI) bt Abhishek Yadav (Raj) 4-1 (5-11, 11-9, 14-12, 11-9, 11-8).
Women’s singles: Unstoppable Shamini enters semis in national table tennis championship
PSPB’s K.Shamini blanked her comrade Manika Batra 4-0 in her quarterfinal clash and looks in great touch to win another national championship. The other three semifinalists are all from the same team as Shamini. Mouma Das beat Krittwika Sinha Roy of RBI 4-2 while Poulami Ghatak went past Neha Aggarwal. In the last quarterfinal match, Ankita Das defeated Pooja Sahastrabuddhe of Maharashtra ‘A’.
Women Singles (Quarterfinals): Mouma Das (PSPB) bt Krittwika Sinha Roy (RBI) 4-2 (12-10, 11-2, 14-16, 11-6, 10-12, 14-12), K. Shamini (PSPB) bt Manika Batra (PSPB) 4-0 (11-5, 11-0, 11-3, 11-7), Poulami Ghatak (PSPB) bt Neha Aggarwal (Del) 4-2 (11-7, 9-11, 6-11, 11-5, 11-8, 11-6), Ankita Das (PSPB) bt Pooja Sahasrabudhe (Mah-A) 4-2 (11-9, 11-5, 11-8, 6-11, 10-12, 11-8).
The semifinals and finals of the singles events of the National table tennis championship are scheduled to be held on Saturday, January 17. It will be an interesting contest between the PSPB players G Sathiyan and Soumyajit Ghosh and there isn’t a clear choice of a winner as both players are excellent at their strengths. Follow Sports Rediscovered for all the updates on the National table tennis championship.