The Pune 7 Aces, who have already made it to the semi-finals of the ongoing Premier Badminton League Season 5, was not perfect tonight but did just enough to cause damage to the Hyderabad Hunters. The PV Sindhu-led brigade has had a dismal outing this season but the Aces have managed to shine every time as they edged past the Hyderabad Hunters to win the tie, 2-1.
The G.M.C. Balayogi SATS Indoor Stadium in Hyderabad was witness to the spectacle of their home team led by PV Sindhu taking on the Pune 7 Aces. Placed at the penultimate position on the rankings table, the Hyderabad Hunters failed to notch up a victory against the Aces.
In the first rubber of the day, the Men's Doubles clash saw the successful pair of Chirag Shetty and Hendra Setiawan taking on Sean Vendy and Ben Lane of the Hyderabad Hunters. The duo of Shetty and Setiawan has been consistent in this season of the PBL and launched off to score yet another victory in straight games, 15-12, 15-9.
The next clash of the day was the Trump Match for the Hyderabad Hunters where Priyanshu Rajawat stepped out against Pune's Mithun Manjunath. In an all-Indian clash, Rajawat's Trump was broken by Manjunath as the duo engaged in an exciting three-game affair. The Aces won the match, 15-11, 11-15, 15-13.
Also check out: the updated PBL Points Table
Sindhu saving grace
Finally, it was the reigning World Champion and team captain, PV Sindhu who had to step out on to court to make things somewhat less dreary for the Hunters. Sindhu clashed with Rituparna Das who attempted to extend the Aces score on the board. However, that plan was put on hold with the lanky Hyderabadi girl taking charge of situations. The 2016 Rio Olympics silver medalist, Sindhu was too good for Das as she lost, 7-15, 8-15.
The Trump Match for the Aces saw the husband-wife pair of Chris and Gabby Adcock taking on Vladimir Ivanov and N. Sikki Reddy. The Adcocks have also been extremely consistent this season but on this occasion, Ivanov and Sikki Reddy broke the Trump of the Pune 7 Aces and won the match in three games. The Indo-Russian pair won the match, 15-9, 11-15, 15-8.
It all came down to a nail-biting Men's Singles clash to decide the winner for the day. The Hunters sent Sourabh Verma from their side against Loh Kean Yew of the Pune 7 Aces. The 22-year-old Singaporean proved to be too good for the 2019 Syed Modi international finalist as in a matter of straight games, Kean Yew wrapped up the match and won the overall tie, 15-14, 15-10. With that, the Hyderabad Hunters suffered another loss at their home ground while the Pune 7 Aces remained in cruise control.