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CWG 2018: India beat Malaysia to win their first mixed Badminton team event 

Pavan Suresh
930   //    10 Apr 2018, 14:54 IST

Badminton - Commonwealth Games Day 5
Badminton - Commonwealth Games Day 5

The Indian badminton team created history by beating defending Champions Malaysia 3-1 in the finals of the Commonwealth Games 2018 held at Gold Coast on Monday.

During the first game, the least favored Indian pair of Ashwini Ponnappa and Satwik Rankireddy started with an initial lead showing aggressive intent. Initially, it appeared to be a one-sided match as the Indians dominated the game not allowing the Malaysian pair Liu Yong Goh and Peng Soon Chan a route back into the game. At the interval, Indian pair led 11-7. After the interval, the Indian pair continued to dominate and won the first set comfortably, 21-14.

During the second set, the Malaysian pair got off to a great start taking a 9-4 lead. At the interval, Goh and Chan took an 11-7 lead. After the interval, the Malaysian pair continued to dominate as the Indian pair made a few unforced errors, particularly the young Rankireddy. Malaysian won the second set 21-15 to force the match into the decider.

The deciding game was an even contest in the initial stages. Then Malaysians played aggressive badminton to take an 11-7 lead at the interval. After the interval, however, the Indian pair showed great fight back and courage to level the score at 12-12, losing just four more points to win the game 21-15 and take a 1-0 lead.

The second tie saw India’s Kidambi Srikanth taking on the fancied Lee Chong Wei. During the early stages, both players cancelled each other out and the score read 15-15 at one point. After that, though, the Indian shuttler took the game by the scruff of its neck to win the set 21-17.

During the second set, the best Indian player started on a positive note and dominated Lee with an 11-5 lead at the interval. Kidambi didn't look back after that and finished the game with a 21-14 score to give India a 2-0 lead in the tie.

The third match witnessed Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty took on the experienced Malaysian pair of Goh and Tan in Men’s doubles. The Malaysian pair showed their experience and won the first set 21-15.

In the second game, the Indian duo had an impressive start again, taking a 6-2 lead, and an 11-7 lead during the interval. After the interval, the Malaysian pair increased their intensity and mustered an incredible comeback to take the set 22-20. 

Saina Nehwal took on Sonia Cheah in the women’s singles, in the 4th game of the tie. The first game was a close fought match as both players fought for each point till 8-8. At the interval, the Malaysian led 11-9. After the interval, Saina Nehwal played aggressive badminton and took 11 points in succession to win the first set 21-11.

Saina started the second set in fine fashion, racing to a 7-3 lead. Cheah showed fighting spirit and leveled the score at 10-10. At the interval, Saina Nehwal had a slender lead of 11-10. After the interval, Cheah held her nerve to win second set 21-19 to force the match into the decider.

In the final game, Saina led 11-9 during the interval and dominated after the break to win the set 21-9.

Indian broke Malaysia’s run of three successive wins at the CWG games. They had won the event during the 2006, 2010 and the 2014 edition of the games. 

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