PANAJI: Manika Batra’s run at the World Singles Qualification Tournament came to an end after she suffered a 4-1 defeat to Monaco’s Xiaoxin Yang in the women’s singles knockout stage-I semi-final match in Doha on Monday, according to a press release.
Despite losing the first two games, World No. 63 Batra held her nerve and attempted a comeback by winning the third game. However her relatively higher-ranked opponent Yang, World No. 44, didn’t let momentum slip and wrapped up the tie 11-9, 11-4, 8-11, 11-4, 11-9 in her favour.
Earlier in the quarter-finals played late on Sunday, Batra thrashed Uzbekistan’s Rimma Gufranova 12-10, 11-3, 11-6, 11-4 while Sutirtha Mukherjee lost against Russian Polina Mikhailova 12-10, 7-11, 8-11, 11-8, 10-12, 5-11 in a thrilling match.
Achanta Sharath Kamal and Gnanasekaran Sathiyan also made exits after suffering losses in their respective men’s singles second round matches on Sunday.
The Indian paddlers will now shift their focus to Asian Olympic Qualification Tournament, which is scheduled from March 18-20 in Doha. Sharath and Sathiyan will be in action in the men’s singles while Batra and Mukherjee will play in the women’s singles. In the mixed doubles category Sharath and Batra will also look to seal the Olympics berth.