Tata Open: Lakshya Sen and Ruthvika Shivani Gadde enter the final
Sixth seed Lakshya Sen continues his impressive run as he reached the final of the $20, 000 Tata Open India International Challenge in Mumbai on Saturday. The 16-year-old needed just 28 minutes to upset the second seeded Abhishek Yelegar, 21-10, 21-12 in the semi-finals.
This is Sen’s second consecutive victory over the 76th ranked Yelegar in as many weeks. Last week, the 108th ranked Sen had got the better of Yelegar in the semi-finals of the India International Series where he went on to successfully defend his title.
With this latest victory, the former junior World No. 1 is now on a nine-match winning streak. The product of the Prakash Padukone Badminton Academy, who also won the Bulgarian Open in August, is seeking his third title of the season.
He takes on the 161st ranked Sitthikom Thammasin of Thailand in the title showdown. The latter beat India’s Mithun Manjunath, 22-20, 21-6 in the other semi-final.
All-Indian final in women’s singles
The women’s singles category will see an all-Indian final between the South Asian Games champion, Ruthvika Shivani Gadde and 19-year-old qualifier, Riya Mukherjee. The eighth seeded Ruthvika put on an impressive show and easily beat Malaysia’s Thinaah M, 21-17, 21-9.
This is her first BWF Tour-level final since the India International Series in November last year where she finished as the runner-up. Gadde won a bronze medal at the Senior National Championships this year.
Mukherjee battled hard and held her nerves for a narrow 24-22, 11-21, 21-19 win in a thrilling semi-final match against giant-killer, Ira Sharma. The latter, all of 17 years, has accounted for the top seed as well as the fifth seed at this tournament.
National men’s doubles champions upset
The men’s doubles section saw a huge upset as the second seeds Manu Attri and B Sumeeth Reddy were sent packing in the semi-finals. The unseeded Thai combine of Maneepong Jongjit and Nanthakarn Yordphaisong beat the reigning Indian national champions, 21-14, 22-20 in 40 minutes.
The Thai pair will now meet the Malaysian combine of Aaron Chia and Wooi Yik Soh, who had earlier stunned the top seeds and defending champions, Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty in the quarter-finals.