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Crisis in Chengdu: Defending champion India knocked out of Thomas Cup

Lakshya Sen shone as the only bright spot as defending champion India lost 1-3 to China in quarter-final of Thomas Cup 2024.

Crisis in Chengdu: Defending champion India knocked out of Thomas Cup

HS Prannoy in men's singles and Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty in men's doubles will lead India at BATC.


The Bridge Desk

Updated: 2 May 2024 3:41 PM GMT

As Dhruv Kapila watched the shuttle fall on his side in the quarter-final of the Thomas Cup, hopes of the Indian badminton fans and the dream to defend the title also fell along.

Despite putting up some fight, the Indian men's team lost 1-3 to hosts China on Thursday and will return without a medal this time from the prestigious tournament.

After losing to Indonesia in the last group game, the defending champions went with a different team and replaced Kidambi Srikanth with Kiran George for the third men's singles.

It was a rematch of the 2023 Asian Games team final which India lost 2-3 to sign off with a maiden silver.

HS Prannoy started well against Shi Yu Qi and stunned him with his deceptions. With the home crowd rallying behind him, Shi made a comeback and Prannoy's spirited fight concluded with a 21-15,11-21,14-21 loss in a match that went for 66 minutes.

In the second match, former men's doubles world number one Satwiksairaj Rankireddy/Chirag Shetty took on current world number one Liang Wei Keng and Wang Chang.

For the second successive day, Satwik and Chirag had to walk back without winning a point for India after they were outplayed 15-21,21-11,12-21 by the world number one pair.

Lakshya Sen started well against Li Shi Feng but lost the first game 13-21 despite leading 11-8 at one point in time. It looked like India's title defence had ended but Lakshya turned up in the second game.

He defeated Feng 21-8 without much trouble and then won the decider 21-14 to give India another breath.

However as expected in the second doubles match, the scratch pair of Dhruv Kapila and Sai Partheek went down 10-21,10-21 to the world No. 11 pair of Ren Xiang Yu and He Ji Ting to dash to India's hopes.

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