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Suthirta upsets Sabine, joins Manika in R64




New Delhi, April 23: Indian qualifier Suthirta Mukherjee scripted a fantastic 4-3 win in what was the biggest women singles upset caused in the 2019 ITTF World Championships at Budapest so far when she sent world No. 58 Sabine Winter of Germany packing today.


In the process, she joined Manika Batra, who had an easy first-round outing against Andrea Todorovic of Serbia 14-12, 11-5, 11-5, 11-8, in the round of 64. However, Archana Kamath and Madhurika Patkar, bowed out of women singles race after making it to the round of 128.


Suthirtha, who is ranked 502 in the world, used strong backhand counters to win 8-11, 17-15, 11-9, 5-11, 6-11, 11-8, 11-6 against the attacking 26-year-old German. The 23-year-old, who is ranked No. 3 in India, was part of the gold-winning women squad at the CWG in Gold Coast. She will be facing Puerto Ricon Adriana Diaz in the next round. 


Manika, the world No. 56 Indian was rusty in her opening game but picked up momentum to dispose of the Serbian qualifier, ranked No. 135, in quick time after the extended first game. Manika will be meeting Chen Szu-Yu of Taipei in her next round.


Archana, who played her third consecutive tough match, lost 11-8, 11-8, 19-17, 8-111, 6-11, 7-11, 4-11 to Egypt’s Dina Meshref after leading 3-0. The energy-sapping third game, which Archana won 19-17, took its toll as the Indian could not stop the marauding Egyptian who picked up the gauntlet to emerge winners.


Madhurika Patkar began well but failed to sustain against Austria’s Amelie Solja as the world no. 65 downed the Indian 5-11, 11-9, 11-6, 8-11, 11-7, 13-11.


Earlier in the day, the Manika combined well with Archana Kamath to beat Konstantina Paridi and Aikaterini Toliou of Greece 11-5, 11-6, 11-6, 11-7 to enter women doubles round of 32 where they will take on Japan’s Honoka Hashimoto and Hitomi Sato. However, the second Indian pair of Madhurika Patkar and Suthirtha Mukehrjee lost to the Canadian-Spanish combine of Mo Zhang and Maria Xiao 2-11, 11-6, 13-15, 8-11, 8-11 to bow out.


Among other doubles events, only the mixed pair of G. Sathiyan and Archana Kamath entered pre-quarterfinals, beating Spaniards Alvaro Robles and Galia Dvorak 11-9, 11-4, 11-8, 11-13, 11-9. Earlier in R 64, the duo accounted for the Netherland’s Laurens Tromer and Britt Eerland 11-8, 14-12, 11-9, 11-3.  Next in their line of firing would be the Korean pair of Lee Sangsu and Jihee Jeon, who had won the ITTF’s World Tour Mixed doubles title last year.


However, the Sharath and Manika pair made its exit in the round of 64 itself when the Indians lost tamely to the Polish pair of Marek Bodowski and Natalia Bajor 14-12, 6-11, 5-11, 6-11, 3-11.


In men doubles, both Indian pairs—Sharath and Sathiyan and Amalraj and Manav—exited in the first round of the main draw. Sathiyan and Sharath lost to Iran’s Nima Alamian and Noshad Alamiyan 4-2 while Manav and Amalraj went down to Singapore’s Clarence Zhe Yu Chew and Ethan Shao Feng Poh 4-1.


Yesterday night, Amalraj failed to make the main draw cut as he bowed out in the preliminary round to Tom Jarvis of England. The latter won the tough battle 11-7, 11-9, 9-11, 6-11, 11-9, 9-11, 11-3.