BAI Selection Trials | Priyanshu Rajawat, Kiran George, Aakarshi Kashyap and Ashmita Chaliha in contention for top spot

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A file image of Ashmita Chaliha.

(Twitter)

BAI Selection Trials | Priyanshu Rajawat, Kiran George, Aakarshi Kashyap and Ashmita Chaliha in contention for top spot

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SportsCafe Desk

04/19/2022

Former world No. 11 Sameer Verma withdrew due to a back ailment on day 4 of BAI selection trials on Monday, leaving Kiran George and Priyanshu Rajawat in contention for the top spot in men's singles. Aakarshi Kashyap and Ashmita Chaliha took lead in the fight for 1 to 4 position in women's singles.

The tryouts are being held to choose the team for the forthcoming Thomas & Uber Cup (May 8-15, Bangkok), Commonwealth Games (July 28-August 8, Birmingham), and Asian Games (Hangzhou, September 10-25).

While Odisha Open champion George overcame Ravi 21-9, 21-15, Priyanshu received a walkover from Sameer, whose withdrawal has resulted in a three-way struggle for positions 1 to 4. While Lakshya Sen and Kidambi Srikanth have already reserved their seats for the Thomas Cup and Asian Games due to their top 15 world rankings, one slot remains open for the Thomas Cup and Asian Games.

Aakarshi had an easy outing, defeating Aditi Bhatt 21-15, 21-13, while Ashmita defeated Unnati Hooda 21-13, 21-16. The winner of the women's singles trials will be picked as the CWG team's second player, while three slots are open for the Uber Cup and Asian Games teams.

In women's doubles, Commonwealth Games bronze medalists N Sikki Reddy and Ashwini Ponnappa and All England Championships semi-finalists Treesa Jolly and Gayatri Gopichand dominated their respective groups to keep their top ranking.

Sikki and Ashwini won their third stage 2A match 21-15, 21-15 over Simran Singhi and Ritika Thaker, while Treesa and Gayatri won their third stage 2B match 16-21, 21-18, 26-24 over Mehreen Riza and Shailja Shukla. Tanisha Crasto and Shruti Mishra came in second place in Stage 2B, while Simran and Ritika came in second place in Stage 2A.

The duo will now compete for positions one through four. The winner of the women's doubles will be picked for the Commonwealth Games, while three slots for the Asian Games and Uber Cup will be up for grabs.

With Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty already selected due to their global number 7 rating, the tryouts for the CWG team will only fill one slot. Two men's pairs, however, will be chosen for the Asian Games and Thomas Cup.

The two men's doubles couples who won their respective Stage 2A and Stage 2B groups were MR Arjun and Dhruv Kapila and Ishaan Bhatnagar and K Sai Pratheek. Manu Attri and B Sumeeth Reddy, and Krishna Prasad G and Vishnuvardhan Goud P finished second in their groups, and the two pairs will compete for 1 to 4 slots next.

Ashwini and Sikki also won stage 2A and stage 2B of the mixed doubles competition with their partners Sumeeth and Sai Pratheek, respectively. Ishaan Bhatnagar and Tanisha Crasto, and Pratik Ranade and Akshaya Warang finished second in Stages 2A and 2B, respectively, to remain in contention for slots 1–4.

The winner of the mixed doubles will be chosen for third place in the CWG.

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