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Ayhika Mukherjee wins 2nd consecutive table tennis title at Polish Junior and Cadet Open

Warsaw, May 30 (IANS): Ayhika Mukherjee, the Slovak Open winner last week, collected her second successive ITTF Junior Circuit girls' singles title when she defeated Germany's Alena Lemmer, the No. 6 seed, 4-2 (10-12, 12-10, 11-4, 6-11, 11-9, 16-14) at the Polish Junior and Cadet Open.

The 16-year-old, who was seeded 10 here at Wladyslawowo (Poland), emerged as a surprise winner Thursday night in an event that was littered with upsets.

Though Ayhika did not cause major upsets during the tournament, the Kolkatan did benefit from those who had caused the surprises.

Going through a purple patch after her Slovak Open performance, Ayhika did not start as she would have wanted. Yet, the teenager came back nicely to take the next two games more authoritatively. Playing an attacking game right from the beginning, Ayhika was at her best with her forehand.

Playing a percentage game, Ayhika cruised until the fourth game where she made a string of disappointing errors which only helped the German's cause.

Lemmer confused her opponent with some clever high toss services and scorching shots to the backhand of Ayhika to rattle the Indian.

Nevertheless, the Indian seized the opportunities in the next game and surged ahead with calculative attacks and defence.

It paid rich dividends for Ayhika, who won the game with minimum points and fuss. However, in the sixth game, which turned out to be a neck and neck race Ayhika emerged victorious in the extended game 16-14 after saving a couple of match points.

Unfortunately for Indian fans, Ayhika and Priyadarshini Das failed to cross the semi-final stage in the doubles, going down to Karolina Mynarova and Krystina Stefcova from the Czech Republic.

The Indian pair lost 11-9, 5-11, 10-12, 11-5, 9-11.

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