Carolina Marin beat PV Sindhu as Hyderabad Hunters defeated Chennai Smashers 4-3 in the inaugural match of the Premier Badminton League at the Gachibowli Stadium in Hyderabad on Sunday (Jan 1). Hunters will play Awadhe Warriors later today.
Rio Olympics gold medallist Marin provided Hunters a winning start by defeating Sindhu 11-8, 12-14, 11-2 in the new 11-point format that makes it difficult for a player to stage a comeback after conceding early ground.
Marin broke away to 9-6 after the two were
Former world No 1 Marin jumped to a 5-0 lead in the decider to take control as Sindhu went down after committing a spate of errors.
After Marin provided the much-needed impetus to Hunters, B Sai Praneeth failed to keep up the momentum as he went down to Tommy Sugiarto 6-11, 8-11. Smashers went ahead by winning their Trump Card match in which Chris and Gabrielle defeated the pair of Satwiksai Rankireddy and Ho Wan Chau 11-7, 11-9.
With two points from the Trump Card win, Smashers led 3-1, but English star Rajiv Ouseph beat T Saensomboonsuk 6-11, 11-8, 11-6 to restore parity for Hunters.
Hunters sent in the Malaysian pair of Boon Heong Tan and Wee Kiong Tan for their Trump Card match. Much to the delight of the home fans, the pair defeated the Smashers duo of Sumeeth Reddy and Mads Pieter Kolding 11-7, 11-8 to seal the contest.
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