Vietnam Open | Ajay Jayaram, Mithun Manjunath book semi-final berth; Rituparna Das crashes out

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Vietnam Open | Ajay Jayaram, Mithun Manjunath book semi-final berth; Rituparna Das crashes out

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SportsCafe Desk

08/10/2018

Indian shuttlers Ajay Jayaram and Mithun Manjunath have fought hard to qualify for the semi-finals in the men’s singles category at the 2018 Vietnam Open. However, their compatriot Rituparna Das has crashed out of the tournament after losing to Thailand’s Phittayaporn Chaiwan.

Jayaram started-off well with a five-point lead in the first game of the quarter-final clash against Canada’s Xiaodong Sheng, who fought back by winning 7 successive points. The Canadian displayed brilliance by managing to keep the lead until Jayaram levelled the score at 17 all. However, Jayaram never seemed to lose hope as he managed to fight till the end to win the first game 26-24. The second game began evenly with both the shuttlers managing to win eight points each after which Jayaram tightened the screws on his opponent. Sheng could not cope with the pressure that Jayaram kept building and found himself trailing 18-14 down in the second game. However, the Canadian did come close by picking 2 points (18-16), but it was not enough as Jayaram wrapped up the match winning the second game 21-17.

Jayaram’s compatriot, Mithun Manjunath qualified for the semi-final after defeating China’s Zhou Zeqi 2-1. Zhou began on a negative note and was 4 points down (1-5) in the first game. However, he took it as a challenge and scored 7 consecutive points to attain a 3-point lead (8-5). The Chinese shuttler did not look back after attaining the lead as for every two points that he won, his opponent could only manage 1. The game never came close as Zhou kept a 3-point lead throughout. He won the first game 21-17. However, Manjunath did not give up and scored an equaliser by winning the second game 21-19. Although the scoreline displayed a close fought contest in the second game, it did not mention that Zhou never managed to get the lead. Manjunath unleashed his best game in the decider as he thrashed the Chinese shuttler 21-11. Zhou won the first point in the third game but could not overpower Manjunath after that as the Indian kept building the lead until he sealed the victory.

On the other hand, Rituparna Das had to pack up after a 0-2 loss against Thailand’s Phittayaporn Chaiwan in the women’s singles category. Game one started-off well as both the shuttlers were 4 each. After the 8th point, Chaiwan fought hard and built a six-point lead until the 24th point (15-9). However, Das did not give up as she managed to reduce the trail until the score was 16-17. The battle continued till the end but Chaiwan managed to win the first game 21-19. The second game too started-off evenly as both the shuttlers battled hard. The scores were almost equal until the 27th point (14 points to Chaiwan and 13 to Das). Unfortunately for the Indian, she could not cope up as she just managed to 1 point as Chaiwan bagged the second game. The Thai shuttler won the final game 21-14 and qualified for the semi-final.

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