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Badminton

PBL 2020: PV Sindhu, Priyanshu Rajawat take Hyderabad Hunters to victory

PBL 2020:  PV Sindhu, Priyanshu Rajawat take Hyderabad Hunters to victory
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Published: 3 Feb 2020 5:47 AM GMT

Rising star Priyanshu Rajawat stole the show as PV Sindhu put up a masterclass against Shriyanshi Pardeshi to guide Hyderabad Hunters to a gritty 4-3 win over Mumbai Rockets at the GMC Balayogi SATS Indoor Stadium here today. With the win, the Hunters climbed one spot above to the sixth position in the league standings.

Also Read: Where is the promised period of Indian badminton

It hasn’t been a season to remember for the former champions, nevertheless Rajawat and Sindhu’s strong performances gave them lots of reasons to cheer as the 284th ranked Dhar shuttler displayed tons of courage and self-belief to beat World No. 49 Lee Dong Keun 15-13, 15-9.

Mumbai Rockets' Parupalli Kashyap in action against Daren Liew during his 8-15, 13-15 win in Hyderabad
Mumbai Rockets' Parupalli Kashyap in action against Daren Liew during his 8-15, 13-15 win in Hyderabad

Trailing 5-8, the 18-year-old showed remarkable speed and

power for a youngster to claw his way back and even lead 11-9. His impressive

footwork and smart placement of the shuttle had Keun in trouble as Rajawat kept

targeting his backhand. With the crowd roaring, the youngster surged to 14-11

before wrapping up the opener.

By alternating powerful smashes with delicate drops at the

net, the young gun rolled to 8-5 and kept his cool to maintain the lead and

reach 11-8. Buoyed by the cheers of support, he finished the big win and

fistpumped to celebrate it in front of a delighted home crowd.

Earlier, the reigning world champion Sindhu brought on her

A-game to defeat her younger compatriot, Shriyanshi Pardeshi 15-5, 15-10.

Sindhu had come to this match on a two-match losing streak, having suffered a

reversal of fortunes at the hands of Michelle Li and Tai Tzu Ying. This time

the Hunters Trump made no mistake in a clinical display against the youngster.

The first game was a completely one-way traffic as Pardeshi

found it difficult to counter the pace and power of the Hunters ace. In the

second game, however, the Mumbai player was able to give a better account of

herself. By speeding up the shuttle, she was able to put an end to Sindhu’s

domination. As Sindhu fumbled at the net, Pardeshi was just two points away

from the World No. 6 at 9-11 before the Hyderabad shuttler stopped her momentum

and wrapped up the match.

Earlier, 2014 Commonwealth Games champion Parupalli Kashyap

won his first match of the season after tasting a defeat in four consecutive

ties. The Mumbai ace has a 3-2 head-to-head record against World No. 42 Daren

Liew on the BWF World Tour and he brought all that conviction against Malaysian

whom he last beat at the Korea Open in November. Showing all his rhythm and

range, the Mumbai Trump was able to register a quickfire 15-8, 15-13 win.

In men’s doubles, Kim Sa Rang and Kim Gi Jung of Mumbai

easily beat Hyderabad’s Ben Lane and Vladimir Ivanov 15-10, 15-8.

With the two teams sharing the first four matches, it was

all down to the mixed doubles rubber where Sikki Reddy and Vladimir Ivanov

teamed up for the hosts against Kim Sa Rang and Pia Zebadiah of Mumbai. Raining

their smashes, the home pair grabbed a 15-8, 15-8 win to seal the tie for

Hyderabad Hunters.

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