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Thursday, May 23, 2024

TT: Chennai Lions thrash Puneri Paltan to enter UTT final


Defending champions Chennai Lions continued their dominant show as they stormed into the final of the Ultimate Table Tennis Season 4 after crushing Puneri Paltan Table Tennis 8-3 in the second semi-final at the Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex, Mahalunge-Balewadi here on Saturday night.

The Chennai franchise will take on Goa Challengers in the final on a Super Sunday and will look to defend their title.

Star Indian paddler Achanta Sharath Kamal faced Manush Shah in the fourth match of the tie and won the necessary eighth point required for victory. The youngster produced startling shots early on to take the first game 11-5 before Sharath Kamal made a fine comeback and clinched the second game 11-5 as Chennai Lions reached the back-to-back final in the league.

The franchise-based league is promoted by Niraj Bajaj and Vita Dani under the auspices of the Table Tennis Federation of India (TTFI).

Earlier, Benedikt Duda won the first match (Men’s Singles) of the tie against 2018 ITTF African-Cup champion Omar Assar 3-0 to give Chennai Lions a perfect start.

The World No. 32 played aggressively from the get-go and used his perfect forehands to good effect to take the opening game 11-5 before pocketing the second by 11-7. Duda looked in complete control of his shots in the third game as well as he clinched it by 11-6 to register a comprehensive victory.

Yangzi Liu defeated Hana Matelova 2-1 to continue her undefeated streak in Season 4 and further extended the lead of the defending champions in the tie. The Australian paddler struggled in the first game as Hana showed immaculate control on her backhand to win it by 11-3 before Yangzi came roaring and clinched the second game 11-8 to force the match into the decider where she registered an 11-7 victory.

In the third match (Mixed Doubles), Sharath Kamal and Yangzi beat Manush Shah and Hana 2-1 and took Chennai Lions’ lead to 7-2 in the tie. Sharath and Yangzi began the match with positive intent. They showcased immaculate control on both flanks to win the first game 11-4 before Manush and Hana took the second by 11-9. The decider of the match went in the favour of the Chennai Lions’ pair by 11-6.

The Season 4 final starts at 7.30 PM.


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