Doo Hoi Kem and Mattias Karlsson, the top-ranked singles players in the RP-SP Mavericks camp proved the difference against Dabang Smashers in the 13-8 triumph in a battle involving two previously-undefeated teams in the Ultimate Table Tennis league here on Wednesday.
Doo, ranked 13th among the women and Mattias, ranked 20th in the men’s world list, raced away to 3-0 victories over Sakura Mori and G. Sathiyan in successive matches to give Mavericks the crucial 11th point in the 21-game tie.
Experience pays off
In the day’s final clash, that pitched the experience of 34-year old Mouma Das against the exuberance of 17-year-old Adriana Diaz, the veteran Indian prevailed over the World No. 38 2-1 to enhance the winning margin.
Even as Mavericks maintained its all-win record to reach 37 points, Smashers remained atop the points table by reaching 39. These two teams are almost sure of being among the semifinalists.
Smashers’ Manika Batra continued her undefeated run after accounting for the all-conquering Sabina Winter. Relying increasingly on her backhand blocks and looking to finish with her fast improving forehand drives, Manika made light of the loss of the first game by winning the next two against Sabine who had not dropped a game in two encounters.
But the joy for Smashers was short-lived as Harmeet Desai, ranked 81, upstaged 27th-ranked Yoshida Masaki. After the duo of G. Sathiyan and a screeching Sakura Mori maintained their unbeaten run, Cendric Nuoytinck kept his slate clean by upsetting 33rd-ranked Kou Lie that helped Smashers stay ahead. However, Doo, Mattias and Mouma won eight of the last nine games to seal Mavericks’ win.
RP-SG Mavericks bt Dabang Smashers 13-8 (Sabine Winter lost to Manika Batra 11-4, 3-11, 7-11; Harmeet Desai bt Yoshida Masaki 8-11, 11-10, 11-9; Harmeet Desai & Doo Hoi Kem lost to G. Sathiyan & Sakura Mori 11-10, 9-11, 2-11; Kou Lie lost to Cedric Nyutinck 7-11, 11-3, 7-11; Doo bt Mori 11-7, 11-5, 11-7; Mattias Karlsson bt Sathiyan 11-7, 11-8, 11-7; Mouma Das bt Adriana Diaz 10-11, 11-8, 11-9).
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