Table Tennis | Asian Cup: India’s Manika Batra losses to Miu Hirano, falls short of main draw – Manika lost 7-11, 11-8, 8-11, 6-11 in 20 minutes against the second-seeded Japanese, who finished third in her group because of a tie.
India’s Manika Batra plays against Thailand’s Sawettabut during the 30th Asian Table Tennis Cup 2017 in Ahmedabad on September 15, 2017 (AFP)
Manika Batra could not sustain the pace and guile against World No.6 Japanese Miu Hirano and went down 1-3 to crash out of the ITTF-ATTF 30th Asian Cup table tennis tournament in Ahmedabad on Saturday. Manika lost 7-11, 11-8, 8-11, 6-11 in 20 minutes against the second-seeded Japanese, who finished third in her group because of a tie.
The Indian, who had qualified for the Asian Cup through regional quota, put up a brave show but she was unable to negotiate the Japanese’s forehand and clever use of the flanks. Manika’s counter and blocks had little effect on the 17- year-old and yet the former national champion managed to stretch her opponent in every game than expected, including taking a game off her.
Coach Massimo Costantini seemed satisfied with the progress of Manika: “We knew the result, but I must say I am impressed with the way she fought against Hirano.”
In the second match, Su Hyowon of Korea accounted for Lee Ho Ching of Hong Kong 3-1 to enter the main draw.
In men singles challenge playoff, Lee Sangsu, who beat Sharath Kamal yesterday, defeated Noshad Alamiyan from Iran in a tough match that went down to the wire. The Korean won 3-2 to advance into the last-eight stages along with Taipei’s Chen Chien-An. The latter beat Nima Alamian 3-1, also from Iran.
Men: Lee Sangsu (KOR) bt Noshad Alamiyan (IRI) 11-4, 10- 12, 11-13, 11-2, 12-10, Chen Chien-An (TPE) bt Nima Alamian (IRI) 11-5, 4-11, 11-8, 11-7.
Women: Miu Hirano (JPN) bt Manika Batra (IND) 11-7, 8-11, 11-8, 11-6; Su Hyowon (KOR) bt Lee Ho Ching (HKG) 11-9, 11-13, 11-9, 11-9.