Badminton: India in Sudirman Cup play-off | other | Hindustan Times
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Badminton: India in Sudirman Cup play-off

other Updated: Jun 15, 2007 15:38 IST

The Indian badminton team, missing some of its top players, recorded a major achievement when they reached the Division 3 play-off stage at the Sudirman Cup in Glasgow, Scotland.

If India manage to beat France in the play-offs, it will be the first time they would be promoted to Division 2 of the world team championships.

India beat hosts Scotland 4-1 to top the Division 3-Group B. They had to buckle down and display strong nerves as all matches were tough encounters.

The mixed doubles pair of V Diju and Aparna Balan recovered from an early deficit to beat Watson Briggs and Imogen Bankier 18-21 21-16 21-18 in 46 minutes.

India grabbed the initiative midway through the second game to draw parity and had to crawl back after conceding a 3-7 lead in the decider as well.

Saina Nehwal also had to endure some anxious moments before getting past Susan Hughes 21-15 19-21 21-12 in a match lasting 49 minutes.

The Indian teenager used her deceptive strokes to win the first game but the Scot came back strongly to level the match. But Saina got off the blocks quickly in the third and took a 11-4 lead after which there was no looking back.

Anup Sridhar also came back strongly to defeat Craig Goddard 19-21 21-7 21-11 in 44 minutes to seal the tie for the Indians.