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Junior Boys ensure a bronze at Asian meet




New Delhi, June 30: The Junior Boys team, comprising Manav Thakkar, Jeet Chandra and Manush Shah, ensured at least a bronze medal for India in the 23rd Asian Junior and Cadet Table Tennis Championships at Asan (South Korea) today.


The Indian boys defeated Iran 3-1 in the quarterfinals to enter the semifinals where they will clash with top-seeded China.


But the Junior Girls crashed out of the team championships losing to top-seed China in straight games. The team members were Moumita Datta, Archana Kamath and Selenadeepthi Selvakumar.


The stories in the Cadet Boys and Cadet Girls were no different as the China blanked out the Indian Cadets 3-0 in both the sections. However, it was creditable for all the Indian squads to have qualified for the main draw where they had to face the toughest opponents.


Manav Thakkar began well to beat Amirreza Abbasi 11-9, 5-11, 11-7, 11-7 to provide a nice cushion. But Jeet Chandra, after putting up a good fight lost the second rubber to Amin Ahmadian 11-5, 15-13, 6-11, 9-11, 10-12 which helped Iran level score.


However Manush Shah ensured 11-3, 11-9, 12-10 win against Iran’s third player Alin Rahnamayhaghighi for India’s upper hand. Manav, playing his reverse singles, downed Ahmadian 11-7, 11-3, 9-11. 11-9 to seal India’s semifinal place.


Earlier in Junior Girls, only Archana managed to take a game off her Chinese rival Tianyi Quian in the second rubber loss of 7-11, 11-9, 8-11, 8-11 while Yingsha Sun beat Moumita Datta 11-8, 11-8, 11-3 and Xunyao Shi beat Selena 11-4, 11-3, 11-5.