UTT South Zone Championship: Telangana, Tamil Nadu take top honours

Tamil Nadu and Telangana clashed in both the finals of the team events and while the former kept its favourites tag in the women’s section intact, the latter caused an upset in the men's final to win the title.

Tamil Nadu women's team poses after winning the title.   -  S. Mahinhsa

Tamil Nadu women and Telangana men took the top honours in the team finals respectively in the UTT-South Zone National ranking table tennis championship at the Jimmy George Indoor Stadium on Wednesday.

Both teams clashed in the finals of the team events and while TN kept its favourites tag in the women’s section intact, Telangana men caused an upset to win the title.

For Telangana, Snehit Rafeeque and Mohammed Ali won the crucial fourth and fifth singles after TN had threatened to sew up a double by gaining an early 2-1 lead.

Perhaps, the TN camp could feel disappointed, as the match was interrupted midway through due to an inaugural function — graced by the Kerala Governor, Justice (retd.) P. Sathasivam.

It was only coincidental, though, as the officials were confident that the match would be wrapped up after an early start.

Tamil Nadu was given a flying start by Nitin Trivengadam, who won the opening tie against Mohammed Ali in five sets.

Telangana men's team strikes a pose after beating Tamil Nadu.   -  S. Mahinhsa

 

Snehit, however, brought the match score on par by making short work of Nikhil Suresh before Tamil Nadu went up through Ananth Devarajan with his win over Aman Balgu.

The tie between Nitin and Snehit was 2-2 when the break was called and on resumption it was the Telangana player who had the last laugh before Mohammed Ali won over Nikhil to complete an enjoyable triumph.

Tamil Nadu eves impress

The women’s final, in comparison, went along expected lines as Selanadeepthi Selvakumar won her two matches in favour of Tamil Nadu and Deepika Neelakandan made it an unassailable 3-1 lead over Telangana by marching past Monica Manohar.

The only saving grace for Telangana was the win eked out by Varuni Jaiswal over Yashini Sivashankar.

The results (team event):

Men (final): Telangana by Tamil Nadu 3-2 (Mohammed Ali lost to Nitin Thiruvengadam 4-11, 11-9, 9-11, 11-8, 11-13; Snehit Rafeeque bt Nikhil Suresh 11-6, 8-11, 11-9, 4-11, 11-8; Aman Balgu lost to Ananth Devarajan 7-11, 9-11, 11-9, 11-7, 7-11; Snehit bt Nitin 12-10, 11-8, 5-11, 5-11, 11-5; Mohammed Ali bt Nikhil 11-8, 7-11, 12-10, 11-9). Semifinals: Tamil Nadu bt Kerala 3-1, Telangana bt Karnataka 3-1. Quarterfinals: Kerala bt Puducherry 3-0, Telangana bt Andhra Pradesh 3-0.

Women (final): Tamil Nadu bt Telangana 3-1 (Selenadeepthi Selvakumar bt Naina 11-9, 8-11, 11-7, 11-9; Yashini Sivashankar lost to Varuni Jaiswal 4-11, 8-11, 9-11; Deepika Neelakandan bt Monica Manohar 8-11, 11-9, 7-11, 11-4, 11-6; Selanadeepthi bt Varuni 10-12, 11-6, 11-7, 11-8). Semifinals: Telangana bt Andhra Pradesh 3-1, Tamil Nadu bt Karnataka 3-2. Quarterfinals: Andhra Pradesh bt Kerala 3-0, Karntaka bt Puducherry 3-0.