Rockets thrash Blasters, top table

Mumbai Rockets Sung Ji-hyun celebrating her victory against Cheung Nyan Yi of Bengaluru Blasters in second season of PBL in Bengaluru on Monday. Photo: PTI

Bangalore: Mumbai Rockets continued their great run of form as they beat Bengaluru Blasters 4-1 in Vodafone Premier Badminton League, Season 2 at the Koramangala Indoor Stadium, on Sunday night.

The win not only underlines Mumbai’s tag as one of the firm favorites to win the league but also saw them topple Awadhe Warriors and go to the top of the table. With the score tied 1-1 mid-way into the tie, it was Ajay Jayaram of Rockets and Viktor Axelsen who clashed in the crucial men’s singles match, which was a trump match for the latter.

Starting the match, it was a great opportunity for Viktor Axelsen to help his team take crucial 3-1 lead midway into the tie. However, Ajay Jayaram who has been in blistering run of form had other plans and won the match 11-8, 11-9 to not only help his team take the lead but also inflict a negative point on Bengaluru.

In the next match, Sung Ji Hyun from Mumbai Rockets played Cheung Nyan Yi in the women’s singles match. It was a trump match for Mumbai Rockets and Sung ji made full use of the opportunity and won the match 11-7, 11-8 to help her team take an unassailable 4-0 lead over the Blasters and put the tie to bed with a match in hand.

Bengaluru playing in front of their home crowd finally gave their fans something to cheer about as their mixed doubles pair of Ko Sung Hyun and N. Sikki Reddy won the last match of the tie 11-6, 11-7 against Nipitphon Puangpuapech and Nadiezda Zieba to avoid a humiliation and salvage a crucial point to keep them in contention for the knockouts.

Earlier in the day, Mumbai Rockets started off on an astounding note as their Men’s singles star beat his compatriot Sourabh Verma 4-11, 11-6, 11-3 in a close fought encounter to go 1-0 up. But, Bengaluru pulled one back immediately as the men’s doubles duo of Ko Sung Hyun and Yeon Seong Yoo beat the Blaster’s pair of Lee Yong Dae and Nipitphon Puangpuapech 7-11, 11-7, 5-11.

With the thumping victory, Rockets are now leading the standings with 16 points from four ties and have almost sealed their spot in the knock-outs. Awadhe Warriors are second with 14 points from three matches, while Chennai Smashers are in the third position with 10 points from three ties. Hyderabad Hunters are in the fourth place with nine points in four ties, followed by Bengaluru Blasters with eight.


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