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Raptors to face warriors in first PBL semifinal

Press Trust of India  |  Bengaluru 

A day before facing the table toppers in the semi-finals, the got a huge boost of confidence by beating former champions Smashers in front of their home crowd at the League Season 4 at the Kanteerava Indoor Stadium, here on Thursday.

Bengaluru skipper recorded his sixth win in as many matches and Praneeth contributed as well to help Bengaluru dethrone the Mumbai Rockets from the third spot as the league stage came to an end.

While the Raptors were drawn to face the on the first day of the semi-finals, defending champions Hyderabad Hunters will take on two-time runners-up Mumbai Rockets in the second semi-final on Saturday.

With the in-form in their line-up, the Warriors will pose some serious threat for last season's runners-up Bengaluru. PV Sindhu, meanwhile, will try her best to inspire the Hunters when they meet the Lee Yong Dae and Sameer Verma-led Rockets.

lost their first match of the night, but roared back into the contention by winning Chennai's trump match, which put an end to their quest to qualify for the semifinals as getting six points in the tie became impossible.

After losing the first match, came back strongly by winning Chennai's trump match 15-11 and 15-12.

Praneeth managed to pull off a victory even as P went down fighting. He played a waiting game and pounced on the opportunities dished out by to send him packing in a jiffy.

The win ensured a place in the semifinal after Praneeth sealed the match by making P to go for a wide dropshot in the second game. This also brought to end Chennai's hopes of qualifying into semifinals as they needed sx points from the tie.

Earlier, the hosts were off to a dreadful start as they lost their first match of the evening to Chennai's doubles pair and in an entralling contest against Bangalore's and Hendra Setiawan, who are former doubles world champions.

After pocketing the first match, Bangalore lost next two matches as they failed to capitalise on the lead given by Ahsan and Setiawan.

sealed the match 14-15, 15-9 and 15-11 after Chris smashed into Setiawan's body for the final point.

Maintaining his winning streak this season, won the third and the team's trump match 15-10, 15-10 for Bangalore without breaking much sweat as he defeated Chong Wei Feng, taking the home side 2-1 up in the tie.

Spectators witnessed a high-level contest in the fourth match as Vu Thi lost to Chennai's J H Sung 10-15, 15-14 and 10-15. Both gave their best, but Sung did well to make her way to the victory post.

Sung won the first game by keeping het cool, but lost the second game after Thi made a good comeback to equalise 1-1 with some lovely shots which mesmerised her rival.

In the deciding game, Sung completed her cent per cent record this season.

In the last match of the tie, mixed doubles pair and of defeated Bangalore's and 8-15,, 15-10 and 15-4.

Chennai were out of contention for semifinal berth, but Chris did not give up and made Bangalore pair to sweat it out for every point.

The pair won the first game but lost the second 12-15, where spectators also saw a 29-shot rally, with fantastic display of reflexes on the court and swift in returns.

Chennai won the decider easily.

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

First Published: Fri, January 11 2019. 00:15 IST