Tokyo Olympics 2020: Indian men's, women's table tennis teams only a win away from securing their maiden qualification

Indian men and women are just one win away from securing their maiden qualification for Olympics, following their contrasting victories against Luxembourg and Sweden respectively in the team qualifier.

Press Trust of India January 23, 2020 16:09:08 IST
Tokyo Olympics 2020: Indian men's, women's table tennis teams only a win away from securing their maiden qualification
  • Indian men and women are just one win away from securing their maiden qualification for Olympics, following their contrasting victories against Luxembourg and Sweden respectively in the team qualifier

  • Sharath Kamal and Harmeet Desai got India off to a winning start, beating Gilles Michely and Eric Glod 11-9, 16-14, 116 in the opening doubles

  • In the subsequent singles, World No 30 G Sathiyan lost the first two games against Mladenovic before fighting back to prevail 8-11, 9-11, 11-3, 13-11, 11-6

Gondomar: Indian men and women are just one win away from securing their maiden qualification for Olympics, following their contrasting victories against Luxembourg and Sweden respectively in the team qualifier on Wednesday.

Tokyo Olympics 2020 Indian mens womens table tennis teams only a win away from securing their maiden qualification

File image G Sathiyan: Twitter @ittfworld

India's men's highest-ranked player G Sathiyan took some time adjusting to the pimpled rubber of Luka Mladenovic but other than that it was a straight forward tie for the fifth seeds who play 11th seeds Slovenia in the all-important round of 16 clash on Friday.

A quarter-final finish guarantees qualification for the Tokyo Olympics. India has never qualified as a team in Olympic history, limiting its participation to individual events.

Sharath Kamal and Harmeet Desai got India off to a winning start, beating Gilles Michely and Eric Glod 11-9, 16-14, 116 in the opening doubles.

In the subsequent singles, World No 30 Sathiyan lost the first two games against Mladenovic before fighting back to prevail 8-11, 9-11, 11-3, 13-11, 11-6.

Veteran Sharath, ranked 33rd, conceded a game to Glod but eventually won 11-3, 11-3, 12-14, 11-5 to complete a 3-0 victory.

The seedings suggest that India are a much better side than Slovenia but Sharath said it will be 50-50 contest.

"They have a pretty balanced team," he told PTI, referring to the presence of 40th ranked Darko Jorgic and 62nd ranked Bojan Tokic in the Slovenian camp.

Slovenia beat Iran 3-1 in their round of 32 match.

Like the men, the Indian women too are a win away from creating history. The 17th seeds pipped 11th seeds Sweden 3-2 after Archana Kamath saved a match point to beat Linda Bergstrom in the fifth and deciding rubber. She won 11-8, 8-11, 9-11, 11-7, 13-11.

However, the foundation of the memorable victory was laid by top-ranked Indian Manika Batra, who won both her singles, beating Bergstrom and Christina Kallberg 3-1 and 3-2 respectively.

The Indians will have to produce something special if they are to down a much stronger Romania in the pre-quarterfinals on Friday.

Manika, ranked at 61, is the sole Indian in the top-100 while Romania boast of 19th ranked Bernadette Szocs and 31st ranked Elizabeta Samara.

Updated Date:

Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.

also read

Tokyo Olympics 2020: Day 11 of deferred Games finally brings summer heat after days of mild weather
Sports

Tokyo Olympics 2020: Day 11 of deferred Games finally brings summer heat after days of mild weather

Heat and humidity were such grave concerns that IOC pressured Tokyo 2020 organisers to move the marathons and race walks to the northern city of Sapporo, which is 800 kilometers (500 miles) north of Tokyo

Boxer Vikas Krishan prefers pro bouts in US over national camp as he prepares for Olympics
Sports

Boxer Vikas Krishan prefers pro bouts in US over national camp as he prepares for Olympics

Less than a year away from his third Olympics, Vikas said he has never enjoyed boxing as much as he does now.

NRAI defers national camp for Olympic core group citing health concerns after shooting coach tests positive for COVID-19
Sports

NRAI defers national camp for Olympic core group citing health concerns after shooting coach tests positive for COVID-19

The training was postponed on last Thursday after a shooting coach at the camp's venue Dr Karni Singh Range tested positive for COVID-19.