Day 6 Report: Tie 6 of the Ultimate Table Tennis witnessed a completely lopsided fixture, as DHFL Maharashtra United registered the biggest win of the tournament so far by subduing RP-SG Mavericks 16-11, with some strong performances by Indian players all around.
Sanil Shetty of Falcons TTC in action during the practice session. Ultimate Table Tennis
The evening started off on a perfect note for United, as Indian Harmeet Desai caused an upset by beating Stefan Fegerl two games to one. Harmeet started off with a service winner, and then went on to play intelligently as he executed 43% of all his flicks, with Fegerl finding no response to the youngster. Stefan got back in Game two, but the momentum was still with Desai as he rallied to win the final Game 11-6.
Portugal’s Fu Yu followed suit and picked up the baton from Desai, as she won the next match 2-1 against Archana Kamath. Fu Yu totally dominated the first two games, outclassing Kamath at every step and raced to 11-3 and 11-6 respectively. Archana came back and won the third game, a combination of her backhand smashes and Fu Yu’s unforced errors aiding her along the way, but it was too little too late.
Match three presented the Mavericks with an opportunity to swing the momentum their way, as the mixed doubles pairing of Sharath Kamal and Sofia Polcanova pushed Harmeet Desai and Liu Jia all the way. Kamal and Polcanova won the first game, but Jia and Harmeet, fresh from his victory over Fegerl, got back strong in Game two to level the match. The stage was set for a thrilling third Game, which ultimately went United’s way as they won the Golden Point in Game three.
Fegerl’s misery continued, as he was completely outplayed and outmatched by United captain Joao Monteiro in the fourth match of the Tie. Monteiro was brutal with his smashes, successfully executing 80% of them as the Austrian had no reply. The last game saw Fegerl try to get one back to aid his team’s total score, but all in vain as Monteiro romped to a 3-0 victory.
The confidence seemed to infect everyone in the United camp, as Liu Jia came out all guns blazing against Sabine Winter. This game was well fought though, as Winter’s aggressive game matched up to Jia’s, as indicated by the 11-9, 11-8 and 11-10 score line, with victory going the Austrian’s way. At this point, United was in cruise control and well on their way to victory.
Game six easily had the most unanticipated result of the day, as Wong Chung Ting, the highest-ranked player in the league, lost to Indian veteran Achanta Sharath Kamal. Kamal was on fire and brought on his years of experience to completely dismantle the youngster from Hong Kong. With the crowd’s backing, Kamal also pulled off what could go down as one of the shots of the tournament, as he smashed the ball from way outside the table to swing it in wickedly and catch Ting completely unaware. That shot won him the best shot of the day. Kamal won the first and second Game to cause a slight dent in the score line, as Ting won a consolation Game at the end.
Sabine Winter got the only comprehensive victory for the Mavericks in Game seven, as she beat Krittwika Roy 3-0. Winter was relentless, making up for her loss against Liu Jia by hitting a total of 24 offensive winning shots as Roy bore the brunt of the German’s onslaught. Winter coolly pocketed three points for her team as they played for pride, still trailing Maharashtra United by some distance.
Wong Chung Ting stepped back on the court for the second time and beat Tiago Apolonia to restore some pride and justify his world ranking. Ting looked more in command as he set himself up for victory in the first Game, but slipped up again as Apolonia came back to win the second Game 11-6. Ting had the last say though, as he got back to winning ways and sealed Maharashtra United’s 15th win for the night.
Sofia Polcanova took on Fu Yu in the final Match of the day, and beat the Portuguese paddler two games to one to win the final Match and take the Mavericks’ tally into double figures. Polcanova displayed a good all-round game and calmly dispatched her opponent, but Fu Yu got one back for her team that helped them register the biggest win of the tournament and take them to the top of the league table.
The next Tie will witness Oilmax-Stag Yoddhas take on Falcons TTC on the 19 July.
Updated Date: Jul 19, 2017 23:03 PM