Prannoy keeps Ahmedabad in semis hunt

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H.S. Prannoy kept Ahmedabad Smash Masters’ semi-finals hopes alive in the third Premier Badminton League with an impressive display against the Mumbai Rockets in Chennai on Tuesday.

The world no. 10 won beat world no. 5 Son Wan Ho 15-12, 15-12 to help Ahmedabad gain an early 3-0 advantage over Mumbai at the Jawaharlal Nehru Indoor Stadium. After losing the first game, the Korean fought back in the second by taking a 12-9 lead but Prannoy was up to the challenge and ended up fetching a crucial point for his team.

Prannoy had made his intentions clear earlier in the day, tweeting: “1% chance, 99% faith that’s how we go tonight for our last league match!! Do or die for a spot in the semis of PBL Season 3”. The 25-year-old then backed his words on court.

World no. 1 Tai Tzu Ying then extended Ahmedab-ad’s domination, defeating Zhang Beiwan 15-9, 15-12.

Tai Tzu wrapped up the first game quickly but in the second, Zhang stretched her to level the scores at 6-6. The 23-year-old Tzu did not allow her opponent any leeway by collecting six points in a row only to find the doughty Zhang reduce the margin at 12-14 before Tzu closed out the match.

Earlier, Ahmedabad’s mixed doubles pair of Law Cheuk Him and Kamilla Rytter Juhl began proceedings by defeating Mumbai’s Lee Yong Dae  and Gabriela Stoeva 15-11, 15-7.

Before their final league match against Mumbai, Ahmedabad were third with 12 points.