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Ahmedabad Smash Masters secure last-four spot in PBL

Press Trust of India  |  Chennai 

Smash Masters secured a berth in the semifinals of League (PBL) with a crushing 5-0 win over Rockets on the final day of the leg here tonight. The team became the first to qualify for the semifinal, at the Sourabh Verma outclassed his brother 15-14, 15-11 in the trump match to ensure Smash Masters' progress. Sourabh took a closely fought first game and looked like running with the second as he opened up a 10-4 lead. fought back briefly but that wasn't enough as his brother looked in control. It was a thoroughly dominant performance from the team, making its debut in the league with World No.1 Tai Tzu Ying underlining her class and H S Prannoy registering an upset 15-12, 15-12 win over World No.5 Son Wan Ho. Tzu Ying was in her elements as she dismantled Beiwen Zhang 15-9, 15-12 in quick time to put Smash Masters 3-0 ahead after three matches. Tzu Ying wrapped up the first game pretty quickly but in the second, Zhang stretched her to level the scores at 6-6. The 23-year-old Tzu did not allow her opponent any leeway by collecting six points in a row only to find the doughty Zhang reduce the margin at 12-14. Tzu ensured the scoreline did not change much by grabbing the match point and win 15-12. Prannoy erased an early deficit against Wan Ho in the first game and won a close battle.

It was a similar story in the second as both went neck-to-neck before the Indian pulled away in the final stages. The match was closer than the scores suggested. and salvaged the sole win for the Rockets with a 15-10, 15-12 defeat of K and Lee Reginald in the final match. Earlier, Ahmedabad's mixed doubles pair of and began the proceedings in earnest by defeating the duo of /15- 11, 15-7. Rockets ended the league with 10 points while Smashers finished with 12 points and are out of contention for the knockouts.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, January 09 2018. 22:25 IST
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