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All India Senior Ranking Badminton Tournament 2018: Sourabh Verma and Rituparna Das eye titles

FEATURED COLUMNIST
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851   //    17 Jun 2018, 14:28 IST

Men's singles Quarter Final badminton match during the Yonex-Sunrise India Open Superseries 2011
Sourabh Verma

The Yonex Sunrise All India Senior Ranking Badminton Tournament 2018, being currently held in Bangalore, is witnessing a resurgence of two former national champions after having been sidelined with frequent injuries. Sourabh Verma and Rituparna Das, both of whom have been struggling for quite some time due to injuries, have made their mark at this event that is serving as a selection tournament for the upcoming Asian Games to be held from August 18.

On Saturday, Verma did not drop a game in the quarter-finals and the semi-finals on his way to booking his berth in Sunday’s summit clash against the top seed Pratul Joshi. He first needed 48 minutes to get the better of the rising star, Lakshya Sen 21-16, 21-19 in a rematch of the Senior National Championships final that the two contested in early 2017.

In the last-four stage, Verma took on the 10th seed Daniel Farid, whom he dispatched 21-16, 21-14. Joshi was equally impressive in the other semi-final and prevailed over Karan Jindal 21-16, 21-16.

In women’s singles, Das produced her fighting skills to see off the ninth seed Kanika Kanwal 21-10, 15-21, 21-9 in a 57 minute battle in the quarter-finals. In the next round, her outing was more comfortable as she defeated the fifth seed Aakarshi Kashyap 21-11, 21-11 in just 31 minutes.

Das will square off against the second seed Sai Uttejitha Rao Chukka, who held her nerves for a gritty 7-21, 21-15, 22-20 win over the 13th seed Asmita Chaliha. The latter had ended the brilliant run of Gayatri Gopichand 21-16, 21-13 in the quarter-finals.

The men’s doubles final will be contested between the pairs of Arjun MR-Shlok Ramchandran and Dhruv Kapila-Krishna Prasad Garaga. The former accounted for third seeds Prakash Raj and Vaibhaav 21-14, 21-9 while the latter beat the fourth seeds Rohan Kapoor and Shivam Sharma 21-15, 22-20.

In women’s doubles, Rutaparna Panda and Arathi Sara Sunil upset the second seeds Aparna Balan and Sruthi KP 21-16, 21-17 while Simran Singhi and and Ritika Thaker held off Trisha Hegde and Drithi Yatheesh 24-22, 23-21.

Singhi and Thaker continue their fine form a week after claiming the title at Mauritius International.

In mixed doubles, Arun George and Arathi Sara Sunil will take on Dhruv Kapila and Meghana Jakkampudi. The latter beat sixth seeds Saurabh Sharma and Anoushka Parikh 21-10, 21-10 while the former won when Hemanagendra Babu and Ningshi Block Hazarika retired trailing 12-21, 1-6.

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FEATURED COLUMNIST
A freelance journalist based in Kolkata who is a diehard Rafael Nadal fan. She is also extremely passionate about India’s progress in sports and hopes to throw light on India’s unsung sports heroes through her articles. When not screaming her lungs out in support of her favourite sports stars, she can be seen reading, watching movies or immersed in planning her next travel destination!
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