PBL: Warriors edged out by Smash Masters

In a tie involving two debutants, Ahmedabad Smash Masters banked on its singles players' wins to beat North Eastern Warriors 4-3 in the Premier Badminton League (PBL) at the N.C. Bordoloi Indoor Stadium here on Tuesday.

World No.1 Tai Tzu-ying asserted her class to tame 21st placed Canadian Michelle Li 15-6, 15-10 in the women's singles fixture. Tai's victory in the trump match helped Ahmedabad develop a 3-1 lead.   -  Ritu Raj Konwar

In a tie involving two debutants, Ahmedabad Smash Masters banked on its singles players' wins to beat North Eastern Warriors 4-3 in the Premier Badminton League (PBL) at the N.C. Bordoloi Indoor Stadium here on Tuesday.

In its last home tie, North Eastern, which could not avail the services of its key men's singles player Ajay Jayaram due to a minor niggle, suffered its second successive defeat.

World No. 49 Sourabh Verma outplayed Pratul Joshi 15-10, 15-7 to give Ahmedabad a strong start.

Tomorrow at Delhi: Chennai Smashers vs Mumbai Rockets at 7 p.m.


In a match packed with long rallies, Sourabh showed his court craft and precision to stay ahead of Joshi, who committed plenty of unforced errors at the net.

As it happened!

However, North Eastern rode on Shin Baek Cheol and Prajakta Sawant's fine 15-13, 15-13 victory over Kamilla Rytter Jhul and Lee Chun Hei Reginald to draw parity.

Exhibiting excellent coordination, the Indo-Korean duo applied pressure at the right time to stop the Ahmedabad shuttlers' progress in both games.

Shin unleashed some well-timed smashes, while Prajakta displayed her sound net play to make it 1-1.

World No.1 Tai Tzu-ying asserted her class to tame 21st placed Canadian Michelle Li 15-6, 15-10 in the women's singles fixture. Tai's victory in the trump match helped Ahmedabad develop a 3-1 lead.

The composed Tai claimed the opening game in no time. The Taiwanese, who trailed 3-6 in the next, showcased her all-round game and superb deception to overtake Michelle at 10-9 and close the contest through an outstanding forehand cross court winner.

In a battle of equals, 10th ranked H.S. Prannoy, who saved four game points in the second game, pipped world No.11 Tzu Wei Wang 15-10, 15-14 to seal the tie in favour of Ahmedabad.

The result: Ahmedabad Smash Masters bt North Eastern Warriors 4-3 (Sourabh Verma bt Pratul Joshi 15-10, 15-7; Kamilla Rytter Jhul-Lee Chun Hei Reginald lost to Shin Baek Cheol-Prajakta Sawant 13-15, 13-15; (Ahmedabad's trump match) Tai Tzu-ying bt Michelle Li 15-6, 15-10; H.S. Prannoy bt Tzu Wei Wang 15-10, 15-14; (North Eastern's trump match) Law Cheuk Him-Lee Chun Hei Reginald lost to Kim Gi Jung-Shin Baek Cheol 8-15, 11-15).