Sharath Kamal’s best day in Ultimate Table Tennis league proved insufficient for Warriors as Harmeet Desai pulled off a stunning 2-1 victory over Aruna Quadri and paved the way for Mavericks’ narrow 11-10 victory here on Monday.
With the teams locked at 9-9, Sabine Winter provided the winning margin when she expectedly defeated Pooja Sahasrabudhe 2-1 in the final singles.
“We would have loved to win the tie and take that confidence into our final encounter against Maharashtra United,” said Sharath, who won his first singles match, following a 2-1 win over World No. 20 Mattias Karlsson. In the following match, he partnered Hana Matelova to emerge victorious against Harmeet and Doo Hoi Kem.
Again the higher-ranked men singles players let Warriors down. World No. 15 Chih Yuan Chuang lost to Mattias Karlsson before the 81st ranked Harmeet got the better of a struggling Quadri, ranked 22nd.
When the caravan moves to Kolkata on Wednesday for the final leg, Warriors (37 points) and Maharashtra United (38) will clash to decide the fourth semi-finalist.
On a day when every match was decided by 2-1 score-line, the first three ties went Warriors’ way with Sofia Polcanova narrowly winning against Ayika Mukherjee and Sharath playing his part in the next two.
Thereafter, Mavericks won four singles matches, with Karlsson, Doo, Harmeet and Winter taking turns to maintain Mavericks’ all-win record after four rounds.
The results: Mavericks bt Warriors 11-10 (Ayhika Mukherjee lost to Sofia Polcanova 9-11, 11-6, 11-10; Mattias Karlsson lost to Sharath Kamal 11-7, 10-11, 7-11; Harmeet Desai & Doo Hoi Kem lost to Sharath Kamal & Hana Matelova 11-8, 9-11, 8-11; Mattias Karlsson bt Chih Yuan Chuang 11-6, 11-7, 7-11; Doo bt Sofia Polcanova 11-7, 9-11, 11-4; Harmeet bt Aruna Quadri 11-8, 4-11, 11-6; Sabine Winter bt Pooja Saharabuddhe 9-11, 11-8, 11-11-7).
Points position (after four rounds): 1-2. Mavericks and Smashers (48 points), 3. Falcons (45), 4 United (38), 5. Warriors (37), 6. Challengers (36).
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