Macau, Feb 24: India entered the quarterfinals of the men’s and women’s team events at the Asian Table Tennis Championships with contrasting victories here Friday.
The men, led by Sharath Kamal, edged out Iran 3-2 while the women blanked Thailand 3-0 to advance to the Championship Division which includes the mighty China, Japan and South Korea.
The maiden entry of Indian women in the quarterfinals stage of the championship came after Mouma Das, Poulomi Ghatak and Ankita Das won the singles matches against their Thai opponents.
Mouma beat Anisara Muangsuk 11-9, 11-7, 12-10 while Poulomi overcame Nanthana Komwong 11-4, 14-12, 11-6 to give India a commanding lead. Ankita then won a close match against Suttlux Rattanaprayoon 14-12, 11-5, 10-12, 11-5 to seal the deal.
India face China in the quarterfinals.
The men, on the other hand, had to dig deep to qualify for the last eight where they meet Chinese Taipei.
Iran’s Noshad Alamiyan was the man that caused problems for India, winning both his matches against Sharath Kamal and Soumyajit Ghosh.
Alamiyan first accounted for Soumyajit 11-7, 11-5, 11-9 with Sharath restoring parity with a 11-5, 16-14, 11-3 win over Akhlaghpasand Mohammad Reza. Then national champion Anthony Amalraj downed Alamian Darounkolaei Nima 11-8, 7-11, 11-8, 11-6 to put India in the lead.
Sharath lost his reverse singles to Alamiyan 11-7, 9-11, 10-12, 6-11. In the decider, Soumyajit rose to the occasion, beating Mohammed Reza 11-8, 11-9, 11-4 to clinch the issue.