Friday, August 30, 2013

Hyderabad Hotshots storm into IBL final



Star shuttler Saina Nehwal accounted for higher-ranked Juliane Schenk in a hard-fought contest as Hyderabad Hotshots thrashed Pune Pistons 3-0 and booked a berth for the summit clash in the inaugural Indian Badminton League in Hyderabad.

Hyderabad's icon player Saina survived some anxious moments before prevailing over Schenk 21-10, 19-21, 11-8 in a tight women's singles contest after Ajay Jayaram pulled off a surprising victory over the top-ranked Tien Minh Nyugen 21-17, 21-11 in men's singles in the first match.
Hyderabad pair of Goh V Shem and Wah Lim Khim then defeated Pune's Joachim Fischer and Sanave Thomas 16-21, 21-14, 11-7 in men's doubles to take their side to the final at the GMC Balayogi indoor stadium.
The match between Saina and Schenk, currently world number four and number three respectively, proved to be an exciting battle marked by long rallies, powerful smashes and drop shots as both tried to outsmart each other.
The first game went in Saina's favour as she managed to expand her initial lead of 7-3 at the time of the first break to a massive 14-4 by the second interval.
The first game between Jayaram (ranked 25) and Vietnam's Tien Minh Nyugen (world number five) promised to be a competitive affair from the start as the Indian put up a fight against his more fancied rival.
Jayaram led 7-6 at the time of first break and the young Hyderabad player maintained a consistent lead with brilliant smashes and cross-court shots. He won the first game with an impressive margin of 21-17.
The second game proved to be equally good for Jayaram who continued to dominate. Jayaram, who had a 7-1 lead at the time of first break, established an unassailable lead of 18-8.
Though ranked lower, Jayaram showed that he was equal to the task and won the second game 21-11 as the capacity crowd in the GMC Balayogi indoor stadium cheered him.
"It was not a miracle overnight. I was suffering from an injury yesterday and I rested the entire day which really worked well and I won the match. I also changed my strategy a little bit to play against Tien Minh Nyugen," said Jayaram after the match.

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