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Axelsen hands Bengaluru Blasters edge in PBL final

Press Trust of India  |  Hyderabad 

World No. 1 demolished in his Trump match to give Blasters a crucial edge over Hunters in the final of the third League here today.

In front of a packed house at the Gachibowli Indoor Stadium, played with authority and won the crucial Trump and the third match 15-5, 15-10 as Blasters were 2-1 (3 -2) ahead on points at the midway stage.

The Hunters will hope that their star Carolina Marin will keep them afloat in the contest by winning the Women's singles match. It will then boil down to the last clash, the Mixed Doubles, to make it a fitting finale.

The Hunters began on the back foot, with their men's doubles pair of and Seong failing to get into their groove and losing the first point.

They found the Blasters' and Rang too hot to handle and gave in 0-2 without much of a fight. The stout Kido, who had controlled the game from the back of the court, just couldn't make his powerful smashes work.

It didn't help that his understanding with his partner was not top notch, allowing their opponents to exploit vast open spaces in the

The Hunters came back into the tie strongly, with their Trump Il coming up with a near immaculate game. The Korean was calm personified, dictating the pace and tone of the match to beat Subhanker Dey 2-0.

Lee Hyun, a southpaw, defended brilliantly, receiving everything that Subhanker threw at him. He kept the rallies going long until he found the perfect shot to finish off the point.

He shot away to a 4-2 and 8-5 lead even as Subhanker was trying to figure him out. rode on the momentum to take the opening game 15-7.

The Korean fell behind at the start of the game, making a few unforced errors. He, however, fought back from 0-2 and 1-4 down to jump into the lead at 6-4.

He seemed to be cruising at 9-6 but his concentration wavered and he gave away a couple of easy points.

Subhanker took advantage of the lapses to catch him at 10-10. inched ahead 12-10 but saw him by his side at 13-13 again. The experienced shuttler then produced two winners to seal the game and match 15-13.

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

First Published: Sun, January 14 2018. 21:40 IST