Suthirta upsets Sabine, mixed luck for Indians in World Table Tennis

Harpal Singh Bedi

New Delhi: On a day of mixed fortunes ,qualifier Suthirta Mukherjee chalked out a upset 4-3 win over world No. 58 Sabine Winter (Germany) in the women singles of the ITTF World Table Tennis Championships at Budapest on Tuesday.

In the process, she joined Manika Batra, who had an easy first-round outing against Andrea Todorovic of Serbia 14-12, 11-5, 11-5, 11-8, in the round of 64.

However, two other Indians Archana Kamath and Madhurika Patkar, bowed out of women singles race after making it to the round of 128.

As per the information received, Suthirtha, ranked 502 in the world, used strong backhand counters to win 8-11, 17-15, 11-9, 5-11, 6-11, 11-8, 11-6 against the attacking 26-year-old German.

The 23-year-old, who is ranked No. 3 in India, was part of the gold-winning women squad at the CWG in Gold Coast.

Manika, the world No. 56, was rusty in her opening game but picked up momentum to dispose of the Serbian qualifier, ranked No. 135, in quick time after the extended first game. Manika will be meeting Chen Szu-Yu of Taipei in her next round.

Archana, who played her third consecutive tough match, lost 11-8, 11-8, 19-17, 8-111, 6-11, 7-11, 4-11 to Egypt’s Dina Meshref after leading 3-0. The energy-sapping third game, which the Indian won 19-17, took its toll as she lost the momentum and crashed out

Madhurika Patkar began well but failed to sustain against Austria’s Amelie Solja as the world no. 65 downed the Indian 5-11, 11-9, 11-6, 8-11, 11-7, 13-11.

Earlier in the day, the Manika combined well with Archana Kamath to beat Konstantina Paridi and Aikaterini Toliou of Greece 11-5, 11-6, 11-6, 11-7 to enter women doubles round of 32 where they will take on Japan’s Honoka Hashimoto and Hitomi Sato.

However, the second Indian pair of Madhurika Patkar and Suthirtha Mukehrjee lost to the Canadian-Spanish combine of Mo Zhang and Maria Xiao 2-11, 11-6, 13-15, 8-11, 8-11 to bow out.

Among other doubles events, only the mixed pair of G. Sathiyan and Archana Kamath entered pre-quarterfinals, beating Spaniards Alvaro Robles and Galia Dvorak 11-9, 11-4, 11-8, 11-13, 11-9. Earlier in R 64, the duo accounted for the Netherland’s Laurens Tromer and Britt Eerland 11-8, 14-12, 11-9, 11-3

However, the Sharath and Manika pair made its exit in the round of 64 itself when the Indians lost tamely to the Polish pair of Marek Bodowski and Natalia Bajor 14-12, 6-11, 5-11, 6-11, 3-11.

In men doubles, both Indian pairs—Sharath and Sathiyan and Amalraj and Manav—exited in the first round of the main draw. Sathiyan and Sharath lost to Iran’s Nima Alamian and Noshad Alamiyan 4-2 while Manav and Amalraj went down to Singapore’s Clarence Zhe Yu Chew and Ethan Shao Feng Poh 4-1.

Last night, Amalraj failed to make the main draw cut as he bowed out in the preliminary round to Tom Jarvis of England. The latter won the tough battle 11-7, 11-9, 9-11, 6-11, 11-9, 9-11, 11-3.

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