Pune: Ayhika Mukherjee's giant-killing ways stood out as RP-SG Mavericks downed a fighting Maharashtra United 11-10 in the Ultimate Table Tennis (UTT) league on Sunday.
Ayhika, Kou Lei and the mixed pair of captain Harmeet Desai and Doo Hoi Kem won the first three matches to put Mavericks in a commanding 6-3 position.
Maharashtra staged a brilliant rally through their foreign players to turn the tables and gain a 10-8 lead.
Kristian Karlsson, Elizabeta Samara and captain Joao Monteiro won their respective singles to ensure three victories in succession for Maharashtra.
However, German Sabine Winter tilted the scales in favour of the Mavericks by winning the last match of the day against Madhurika Patkar 3-0 (11-7, 11-9, 11-10).
Incidentally, the last point of the tie was decided by a golden point with Sabine's smashing return clinching the issue.
The 21-year-old 164th-ranked Ayhika, who had upset World No 20 Lee Ho Ching of Hong Kong in Mavericks' victory over Empowerji Challengers, shocked World No 56 Lily Zhang 2-1 (10-11, 11-5, 11-10).
Ukranian Kou Lie quelled Anthony Amalrajs challenge 2-1 (10-11, 11-10, 11-5) for Mavericks' second win and swelled their lead to 4-2 on points after the first two singles.
World No 18 Kristian Karlsson began the turnaround for Maharashtra by defeating fellow Swede Kristian Karlsson (World No 20) 2-1 (11-9, 11-6, 10-11) before World No 19 Samara stepped up to upset Doo.
In a tussle between captains, Mavericks' Desai was edged out by Monteiro in a cliff-hanger 1-2 (11-10, 9-11, 10-11) before Sabine ensured Mavericks' victory.
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Updated Date: Jun 17, 2018 23:13 PM