Malvika Bansod, Aakrashi Kashyap set up girls’ singles title clash

February 8, 2018, Delhi



National junior girls’ champion Aakarshi Kashyap, who trains in the Bhilai Steel Plant campus without a coach, continued her relentless pursuit of the crown in the Khelo India School Games with a 21-8, 21-17 victory over Amolika Singh (Uttar Pradesh) in the semifinals at the Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium here tonight.

Seeded second behind left-handed Malvika Bansod (Maharashtra), Aakarshi Kashyap cruised to the final, ensuring that she would do that without dropping a game in the four matches. With a win just over half an hour, the Chattisgarh has ensured that the State would rise in the medals’ tally by assuring herself at least a silver medal. Her State has two bronze medals so far.

Playing with her trademark calm, Malvika Bansod overcame a game challenge by Unnati Bisht (Uttarakhand) and also went through to the final without losing a game in four matches. She was trailing for a large part of the first game of the semifinals but she wore her opponent down by engaging her in long rallies and using deception to the hilt.

The two girls had met in the National junior championship U17 final at Guwahati in December. Tomorrow’s final promises to be an exciting rematch.

The No. 7 seed Aakash Yadav (Uttar Pradesh) put his best foot forward to get past Telangana’s Koya Sai Charan, seeded one slot above him, in straight games in 40 minutes. His 22-20, 21-14 win in the semifinals showed that the day’s form counts in sport and the rankings do not matter much. For the record, Sai Charan is No. 9 on the BAI U19 list while Aakash is No. 30.

Aakash Yadav will meet National Junior Champion Maisnam Meiraba (Manipur) who beat Rohan Gurbani (Maharashtra) in the other semifinal. Seeded fourth, the Manipur lad knows Rohan Gurbani’s game pretty well, having trained with him at the Prakash Padukone Badminton Academy in Bengaluru.

Results (semifinals)

Boys singles: (7) Aakash Yadav (Uttar Pradesh) beat (6) Koya Sai Charan (Telangana) 22-20, 21-14; (4) Maisnam Meiraba (Manipur) beat (8) Rohan Gurbani (Maharashtra) 21-19, 21-10.

Girls singles: (1) Malvika Bansod (Maharashtra) beat (4) Unnati Bisht (Uttarakhand) 21-19; 21-15; (2) Aakarshi Kashyap (Chattisgarh) beat (7) Amolika Singh (Uttar Pradesh) 21-8, 21-17.

Boys doubles: (1) Navaneek Bokka and Vishnuvardhan Goud (Telangana) beat Ajinkya and Tejas Kallokar (Karnataka) 21-9, 21-17; (2) Aravind V Suresh and Edwin Joy (Kerala) beat (3) Kush Chugh and Varun Trikha (Haryana) 19-21, 21-8, 21-18.

Girls doubles: Deepshikha Singh and Likhita Shrivastava (Uttar Pradesh) beat (4) Keerthana P Shroff and Medha Shashidharan (Karnataka) 21-13, 21-8; (2) Dhriti Yatheesh and Trisha Hedge (Karnataka) beat (3) Samriddhi Singh and Shruri Mishra (Uttar Pradesh) 21-18, 26-24

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