Mumbai, June 17 (IANS) Indian paddlers gave another account of their abilities by winning two bronze medals in the China Junior & Cadet Open played at Taicang, China, late on Sunday night.
Manush Shah led the charge for India in the junior boys’ category, returning with a bronze after going down in the semifinal of the tournament, which is part of the 2019 ITTF Junior Circuit Golden series.
Manush got off to a good start beating Takeru Kashiwa 4-3 in a nail-biting finish in the round of 32 match. He then went on to face Yik Man Pau of Korea in the pre-quarterfinal. He won the opening game, but lost the next two. Down 1-2, he launched a good comeback and won the next three games to move into the last 8. Up against the formidable Yuto Abe, Manush did not have the best of the starts and lost the opening game 10-12.
But he got right back into the mix by winning the next two games by identical scoreline of 11-8 to make it 2-1 in his favour. But he lost the next game 6-11 to surrender the lead. With the scores levelled at the halfway stage, any slip could have hurt him but he showed great composure and won the next two games 11-6, 14-12 to enter into medal round.
However, he could not keep up the momentum in semifinal against local favourite Kaiyuan Quan and went down 0-4 (4-11, 10-12, 7-11, 4-11) to settle for the bronze.
The junior girls’ team of Swastika Ghosh and Prapti Sen sizzled in the initial stages of the tournament and won all their matches to top their group. They won by the same scoreline of 3-0 against all their opponents in the group stage.
Up against eventual champions China, they could not replicate their initial performance and went down 0-3 in the semifinal to settle for bronze.