G Sathiyan
G SathiyanIANS

National Games TT: Sharath retires citing back injury; Sathiyan, Harmeet and Manika sail into semi-finals

Surat, September 23, 2022

Second-seeded Sharath Kamal retired from his table tennis men's singles quarter-final clash due to back pain in the 36th National Games here today.

Sharath was leading two sets to one and 6-1 in the fourth set against Haryana’s Soumyajit Ghosh when he called for medical attention and then decided to retire after a few minutes of treatment.

Top seed G Sathiyan, on the other hand, quelled the challenge of local boy Manav Thakkar 4-1 in a fast-paced encounter.

Though Thakkar kept pace with the top seeds' style of play, he wasn’t able to crack his defence when it mattered the most and and Sathiyan won 11-7, 11-8, 8-11, 14-12, 13-11.

Sathiyan will now face Harmeet Desai, who thrashed Deepit Patil 4-0.

The other Gujarat paddler to make it to the semi-finals was Manush Shah, who got the better of F R Snehit.

The southpaw looked down and out in the opening two sets as he struggled for rhythm and accuracy. But once he recouped, the strokes began to flow and he turned the tables on his opponent to win 4-2.

Earlier, Reethrishya Tennison was the only player among the top four seeds to miss out on a semi-final berth after she was knocked out by the experienced Sutirtha Mukherjee in the quarters.

Sutirtha, who represented India at the Tokyo Olympics, also avenged her loss to the fourth seeded Reeth in the team events by clinching the last eight round encounter 3-1.

It looked like third seed Diya Chitale may also join her state mate on the sidelines as she was pushed to the brink by Haryana’s Suhana Saini. Both players engaged in many fast-paced rallies throughout their seven-set encounter in which no player ever managed a two-set lead at any stage.

In the other quarter-finals, top seed Manika Batra and second seed Sreeja Akula registered convincing wins over their respective opponents to book their semi-final berths.

NNN

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