India goes fighting to Malaysia 2-3 in their first match of the Sudirman Cup played here at China on Monday. It was a good performance by team India who played some good badminton but was not enough to beat the Malaysians.
The first match of the day was the Men’s doubles with Manu Attri pairing with Sumeeth Reddy who lost to Goh and Tan.
In the first game, the Indians double pair started off shakily giving 3 points in a row and 4 more points after taking the first point. At the changeover, it was 11-4 in favor of Malaysian pair. After the change over, the Indian pair played a bit better to reach 12-19. There was an excellent rally at 12-19 which India won to make 13-19. However Malasyian pair won the game 21-15.
In the second game, Indian pair had good start taking 2-0 lead then equaled at 3-3, after that they took alternate points till 6-6, then Indian pair took two points 8-6 but Malaysian pair equaled at 8-8. The Indians led 11-10 at the changeover. After the changeover the Indians lost the plot and made a lot of unforced errors to lose it 16-21. Malaysia took a 1-0 lead.
In the second tie, Saina Nehwal began the second match with a good start. Both of the players took alternate points to make it 4-4. Saina took two points to take a 6-4 lead. An excellent rally took place which was won Tee to make it 5-6. Another excellent rally took place which was won by Saina to make it 7-5. Then both of them took alternate points till 9-9. At changeover Saina led 11-9. The Malaysian player equaled at 12-12 and then equaled at 14-14. Saina had to struggle and finally the set 24-22.
In the second game, Saina dominated and took a commanding 8-2 lead. At the changeover Saina led 11-3. Tee tried to comeback but it was very easy for Saina to take second set 21-13. India made it 1-1.
The third game was the Men’s singles with Srikanth facing Lee Chong Wei. In this match, both of them started off to a great start. Lee Chong Wei took a 5-3 lead before Srikanth equaled at 5-5. Lei Chong Wei took 2 successive points to make it 7-5 before Srikanth equaled at 7-7, Srikanth took 2 points from 8-8 made it 10-8. Lee Chong Wei equaled at 10-10. At the changeover, Lee Chong Wei led 11-10. Lee Chong Wei took 4 successive points to make 14-10. An excellent rally took place which was won by Srikanth to make it 13-17. Srikanth took 3 successive points to make it 16-19. Lee Chong Wei took the first game 21-16.
In the second game, Lee Chong Wei dominated Srikanth and never allowed the Indian to comeback in the game. Lee Chong Wei took the game 21-15 and gave Malaysia 2-1.
The fourth game saw the Women’s doubles match. Ashwini Ponappa and Jwala Gutta faced off against Hoon and Woon. In the first game, Jwala Gutta and Ponappa made a fantastic start. Both of pairs were playing some excellent badminton. At the changeover Jwala Gutta and Ponappa led 11-9. But the Malaysian pair made a good comeback but Ponappa and Gutta won the game 21-18.
In the second game, the Malaysian pair took advantage and played some excellent badminton. At the changeover Malaysian pair led 11-10. The Indian pair came back to equal at 19-19 but the Malaysian pair won the set 21-19.
In the deciding game, the Malaysian pair started off a great start taking a 6-2 lead before Jwala Gutta/ Ponappa made a fantastic comeback. At the changeover Jwala/ Ponappa led 11-10. After the changeover, Jwala Gutta and Ponappa played some excellent badminton and won the third set 21-15. India made it 2-2.
In the final match, it was mixed doubles match between Sikki Reddy/Vishnu versus Chan and Goh. In the first game, both the teams played some good badminton as the unseeded Indian pair took 2 -0 lead but at the change over Malaysian pair led 11-8. After the changeover, the Indian pair from 10-16 down took 4 points in row to make it 14-16. The Malaysian pair took 5 points in row to take the first game 21-14.
In the second game, Indian pair began off to great start taking 2-0 lead. Both of the pairs took alternate points to equal at 10-10. At the changeover the Indian pair led 11-10. The Malaysian pair used their experience and won the match 21-18 despite a brave effort from the Indians.