The Indian paddlers -- singles and doubles, both -- sailed into the next rounds at the Asian Table Tennis Championship 2021 in Doha, on Saturday. After India clinched historic bronze in the men's team event, chances for another medal look bright as two doubles teams have entered quarters as well.
After a historic bronze medal by the Indian men's team, the good show by the paddlers continued at the Asian Table Tennis Championship 2021 in Doha, Qatar. Olympians Sharath Kamal, Sathiyan Gnanasekaran and Sutirtha Mukherjee won their respective round of 64 matches, according to a report in Olympics.com.
Sharath Kamal routed Iran's Mohammadali Rouintanesfahani 3-0 (12-10, 11-7, 11-7), with G Sathiyan defeating Naif Al-Jadai of Saudi Arabia (11-3,12-10, 11-1). These performances came after the duo got a bye in their respective first-round matches. Other Indians -- Harmeet Desai, Manav Thakkar and Sanil Shetty, also progressed to the round of 32.
In the women's section, Sutirtha Mukherjee defeated Mongolia’s Batmunkh Bolor-Erdene in straight games (11-6, 11-4, 11-4), and booked a place in the round of 32 along with Archana Kamath, Ayhika Mukherjee and Sreeja Akula.
Not only in singles, but the paddlers displayed decent form in the doubles as well. Veteran Sharath Kamal and G Sathiyan beat Qatar in the opening match to make it to the round of 16. Then later the duo played a five-setter to prevail over the Kazakh duo of Alan Kurmangaliyev and Kirill Gerassimenko 3-2 (11-9, 11-6, 9-11, 8-11, 11-7).
The other men's doubles pair of Harmeet Desai and Manav Thakkar also made it to the quarters after a win over Saudi Arabia. On the other hand, the women's doubles pair of Sutirtha Mukherjee and Ayhika Mukherjee too entered the quarters after they beat Chen Szu-Yu and Li Yu-jhun of Chinese Taipei 3-1 (11-9, 12-10, 8-11, 11-9).
The only defeat of the day came to the pair of Archana Kamath and Sreeja Akula who crashed out in the round of 16 after losing 1-3 (10-12, 7-11, 12-10, 13-15) to Doo Hoi Kem and Lee Ho Ching of Hong Kong.