Inter-Institutional C'ship: Sathiyan eases to title, Pooja battles past Madhurika

G. Sathiyan raced to a 11-5, 11-1, 11-4, 11-4 triumph over Harmeet Desai and retained his title, while Pooja Sahasrabudhe was made to dig deep in her hard-fought 11-9, 12-10, 12-10, 11-7 win over Madhurika Patkar.

G. Sathiyan had it easy against Harmeet Desai while Pooja Sahasrabudhe had a tougher encounter against Madhurika Patkar.   -  Shiv Kumar

As expected, second seed G. Sathiyan continued his good run against Harmeet Desai while Pooja Sahasrabudhe outplayed National champion Madhurika Patkar in a one-sided singles finals of the LPS Bossard All India inter-institutional table tennis championship here
on Monday.

In a 20-minute title-match that began two hours after the end of the ladies final, Sathiyan was not required to do much, with Harmeet failing to come close the form he produced in ousting a tired Sharath Kamal in the semfinals played in the morning. Sathiyan raced away to a 11-5, 11-1, 11-4, 11-4 triumph and retained the title won in Jaipur last year.

Harmeet, perhaps affected by the two-hour wait caused due to the late arrival of the chief guest, was too erratic against a mentally tougher Sathiyan, who hardly put a foot wrong during the mismatch.

“I think Harmeet was affected by the long wait,” said Sathiyan after the final. “I kept my focus, stuck to my plans and tactically, it worked well for me.”

Sathiyan ensured he did not let Harmeet get into the attacking mode and was ready for the counter. But Harmeet hardly landed too many returns in succession to worry Sathiyan.

If this was Sathiyan’s third title in the premier event, it was Pooja’s first in the hampionship. Sathiyan received Rs. 80,000 while Pooja collected Rs. 70,000.

In contrast to the men’s final, the ladies title-match was fought better. Pooja appeared in her elements on way to an 11-9, 12-10, 12-10, 11-7 verdict over her ONGC teammate. Madhurika, in spite of being erratic, did not let Pooja run away with any of the games. It
was Pooja’s resilience that saw her play the big points better.

During the 35-minute final, Madhurika held a game-point in the third game but Pooja bounced back from 9-10 to claim three straight points.

In the semifinals, Madhurika bounced back to beat former National champion Ankita Das after rallying twice from arrears. Pooja was always in control against Takeme Sarkar though the latter twice levelled the match-score.

The results (from Petroleum unless stated):

Men (final): G. Sathiyan bt Harmeet Desai 11-5, 11-1, 11-4, 11-4;
(semifinals): Desai bt Sharath Kamal 8-11, 11-7, 11-4, 11-4, 11-7;
Sathiyan bt Arjun Ghosh (AAI) 11-6, 7-11, 11-4, 11-7, 11-6.

Women (final) Pooja Sahasrabudhe bt Madhurika Patkar 11-9, 12-10,
12-10, 11-7; (semifinals): Madhurika bt Ankita Das 5-11, 11-6, 4-11,
11-8, 11-5, 11-7; Pooja bt Takeme Sarkar 11-1, 8-11, 11-7, 11-13,
11-3, 11-7.

Men doubles (final): Sudhanshu Grover and Abhishek Yadav bt Jubin
Kumar and Sanil Shetty 11-9, 13-11, 10-12, 7-11, 11-3.

Women doubles (final): Sreeja Akula and Ayhika Mukherjee (RBI) bt
Moumita Dutta and Kaushani Nath (AAI) 11-6, 11-5, 8-11, 7-11, 11-5.