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Manush in City of Joy, Manushree joins the party
Earlier, Tamil Nadu’s Vishwa Deenadayalan kept his top billing intact and beat Delhi’s Payas Jain to win his first Cadet Boys singles gold. What Payas couldn’t do Lakshita Narang did for Delhi, blanking out qualifier Ambika Gupta from UP for a 4-0 verdict and gold on her first appearance.
Earlier the pair of Manush and Soham had claimed the sub-junior doubles title to make it a very profitable nationals’ outing for themselves and Gujarat. They beat PSPBA’s Jeho and Alberto Lrruata 3-1. The Gujarat boys had also lifted the team trophy earlier. The Sub-Junior Girls doubles went to Delhi’s Ishita Gupta and Amiesha Dhall who thrashed top-seeded Maharashtra pair of Manushree Patil and Swastika Ghosh 3-1.
Unlike the boys final which went only one way, the sub-junior girls’ final was a see-saw battle with the pendulum swinging from one end to another with the players taking one and giving one. But once the decider began, it was Maharashtra all the way as Manushree drove and countered well to shut her North Bengal opponent quite early. Similarly, even the Cadet Boys final witnessed tense moments with Payas and Vishwa doing everything possible to keep their seeding and reputation intact. But the error-prone match finally went the top-seed way as he shifted gears to finish in style and speedily.
It was a pathetic performance by the PSB Academy boys. Surprisingly, not a single player could lay his hands on an individual medal. However, the team had won silver in the nationals. As if this was not enough, there were more shocks in store for the seeded players in all categories. In Sub-Junior Boys, apart from four PSPBA seeds, Delhi’s Shivjit Singh Lamba (No. 5) and Wesley D Rozoario (6) also exited. In Sub-Junior Girls, West Bengal’s Prapti Sen (No. 2) and No. 6, 7 and 8th seeds, Tanishi Kirtani (Goa), Diya Chitale (Mah) and Anusha Kutumbale (MP) bowed out in the quarterfinals.
In Cadet Boys, only the first four seeds survived to enter semifinals while the rest fell by the way in the quarters itself. But the biggest surprise was in Cadet Girls as top-seed Kavyasree Baskar from Tami Nadu bit the dust in the quarterfinals. Two other Tamil Nadu seeds—Nehal Suriya Narayanan (5), Sathvika Venkata Chalapathi (8)—followed her apart from No. 4 seed Suhana Saini (Har), West Bengal’s Prithoki Chakraborty (6) and Maharashtra’s Kheya Shah (7).
In sub-junior semifinals, top-seeded Manush Shah easily defeated Jayabrata Bhattacharjee of North Bengal 4-0 while state mate Soham Pandya downed Delhi’s Shakreja Gourang by the same margin to make it a Gujarat final. As for the girls, North Bengal’s Nikita Sarkar, who accounted for Maharashtra’s Swastika Ghosh, will take on another Maharashtra padder Manushree Patil.
The top seed struggled before outsmarting Delhi girl, Ishita Gupta who led 3-2. Manushree was down and out at 5-2 and 7-9 before making it 10-10 and with Ishita gifting away two points, sending the ball on to the net, Manushree entered the maiden final.
In Cadet Boys, the final battle will be between Delhi’s Payas Jain and TN’s Vishwa Deenadayalan who beat state mate Varun Ganesh in straight games. Payas had earlier dealt 4-0 blow to UP’s Divyansh Srivastava in the first semifinal. In Cadet Girls, giant killer left-hander, Ambika Gupta, felled another seeded player from Tamil Nadu, Sathvika to earn a final meeting with Lakshita Narang of Delhi. She defeated Karnataka’s Anargaya Manjunath 3-0.
West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee gave away medals to the players who made it to the podium.
Sub-Junior Boys: Final: Manush Shah (Guj) bt Soham Pandya 11-9, 11-6, 11-6, 11-5; Semifinals: Manush Shah bt Jayabrata Bhattacharjee (NB) 11-4, 11-3, 11-7, 11-3, Soham Pandya bt Shakreja Gourang (Del) 11-5, 11-5, 12-10, 11-4; Quarterfinals: Manush Shah bt H. Jeho (PSPBA) 4-0, Jayabrata Bhattacharjee bt Hardik Khurana (Del) 4-0, Shakreja Gourang bt Shubahdeep (WB) 4-2, Soham Pandya bt Anukram Jain (PSPBA) 4-3.
Doubles: Final: Manush Shah/Soham Pandya (Guj) bt H. Jeho/Alberto Lrruata (PSPBA) 11-6, 12-10, 9-11, 14-12.
Sub-Junior Girls: Final: Manushree Patil (Mah) bt Nikita Sarkar (NB) 11-5, 9-11, 11-7, 8-11, 11-6, 9-11, 11-7; Semifinals: Nikita Sarkar bt Swastika Ghosh (Mah) 12-10, 11-9, 9-11, 11-3, 11-7, Manushree Patil bt Ishita Gupta (Del) 9-11, 11-9, 12-10, 9-11, 8-11, 11-7, 12-10; Quarterfinals: Nikita Sarkar bt Prapti Sen (WB) 4-1, Swastika Ghosh bt Vanshika Bhargava 4-1, Ishita Gupta bt Diya Chitale (Mah) 4-3, Manushree Patil bt Ameisha Dhall (Del) 4-2.
Doubles: Final: Ishita Gupta/Amiesha Dhall (Del) bt Manushree Patil/Swastika Ghosh (Mah) 12-10, 10-12, 11-9, 11-6.
Cadet Boys: Final: Vishwa Deenadayalan (TN) bt Payas Jain (Del) 14-16, 10-12, 13-11, 11-4, 13-11, 7-11, 11-5; Semifinals: Payas Jain bt Divyansh Srivastava (UP) 11-3, 11-9, 13-11, 11-4, Vishwa Deenadayalan bt Varun Ganesh (TN) 9-11, 11-4, 11-8, 11-2, 11-6; Quarterfinals: Payas Jain bt Marcose Gigu (KNT) 3-1, Divyansh Srivastava bt Jash Modi (Mah) 3-0, Varun Ganesh bt Rudra Narayan Ghosh (WB) 3-1, Vishwa Deenadayalan bt Soumyadeep Sarkar (NB) 4-0.
Cadet Girls: Final: Lakshita Narang bt Ambita Gupta (UP) 11-7, 11-7, 11-8, 11-8; Semifinals: Ambika Gupta bt Sathvika Srinivasan 11-8, 7-11, 9-11, 11-6, 11-6, 11-9, Lakshita Narang bt Anargya Manjunat (KNT) 9-11, 9-11, 11-9, 13-11, 11-7, 11-9; Quarterfinals: Ambika Gupta bt Kavyasree Baskar (TN) 3-1, Sathvika Srinivasan bt Sucheta Prosad (WB) 3-1, Anargaya Manjunath bt Tiyasa Chatterjee (WB) 3-2, Lakshita Narang bt Shreya Shiva Kumar (TN) 3-0.