Sameer Verma had to fight in his third round match against compatriot Shreyansh Jaiswal like a hardened foe in the 2015 Vietnam Grand Prix badminton tournament. After losing the first game, Verma had to bring out his best to overcome the feisty 19-year old Jaiswal before he could force a decider. Then he took the third game easily to end a 68-minute winning ordeal. For a place in the semifinal, verma will have to beat Korean veteran and no.2 seed Lee Hyun Il on Friday. However, the rest of Indian challenge faded away in the tournament with the elimination of men’s doubles pair of Akshay Dewalkar/Pranaav Jerry Chopra and the mixed doubles duo of Arun Vishnu/Aparna Balan .
20-year old Sameer Verma couldn’t have imagined what lay in store for him before he came face-to-face with his countryman Shreyans Jaiswal. In the third round match of the 2015 Vietnam Open in Ho Chi Minh City on Thursday, the two Indians were equally matched from the start. Having made it to the third round, Jaiswal did his best and took the first game from Verma 22-20. The second was a monumental battle with neither player wanting to give it away. Jaiswal pushed Verma to the brink and could have won but he committed some unforced errors on crunch moments. Verma, however, seized the opportunity and forced the decider by wresting the second game 26-24. After that, the third game belonged to Verma, who sailed into the quarterfinal with a 20-22, 26-24, 21-17 victory. To reach the semifinals, Verma will have to contend with the second-seeded seasoned Korean Lee Hyun Il. The 35-year old Lee came through in the quarterfinals after defeating Taiwan’s no.16 seed Tzu Wei Wang 21-11, 21-14 in just 34 minutes.
India’s challenge in men’s doubles came to an end with the third seeded pair of Akshay Dewalkar and Pranaav Jerry Chopra going down against China’s Kaixiang Huang and Sijie Wang. The Indian pair couldn’t justify their higher ranking in the tournament and fell tamely against the Chinese in 35 minutes at 12-21, 14-21. India’s mixed doubles duo of Arun Vishnu and Aparna Balan also exited the tournament with a meek surrender against the seventh seeded Indonesians Alfian Eko Prasetya and Annisa Saufika. The Indians played badly and succumbed to a 9-21 20-22 defeat in 30 minutes.
Elsewhere, men’s singles top seed Tommy Sugiarto of Indonesia took just 32 minutes before dispatching Malaysia’s Ai Wei Jian 21-12, 21-13. For a place in the semifinal, Sugiarto will play against his unseeded compatriot Alamsyah Yusuf, who caused an upset by beating Korea’s no.6 seed Lee Dong Kyun 21-19, 21-15. In a major upset in women’s draw, top seeded Thai woman Busanan Ongbumrungpan lost to Indonesia’s Fitriani Fitriani in a 62-minute battle. The Indonesian fought hard after losing the first game and bounced back to oust the top seed 19-21, 21-19, 21-16. With the second seeded Beatriz Corrales having withdrawn from the tournament already, the highest seeded player remaining in women’s draw is Thailand’s no.3 Porntip Buranaprasertsuk, who reached the quarterfinal by defeating Malaysia’s Jing Yi Tee 21-16, 21-13.
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