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Pawar prevails over Kurian, Bhat cruises along

other Updated: Feb 15, 2009 13:14 IST
Abhijeet Kulkarni
Abhijeet Kulkarni
Hindustan Times
Pawar prevails over Kurian

The new system of open draw was expected to throw up some interesting match-ups in the initial round of the Senior National Badminton Championship.

Though there were hardly any surprises in the women's section, the otherwise sleepy Abhay Prashal stadium came to life in the evening when fourth seed Anand Pawar of Air India faced Kerala's Thomas Kurian, a former Indian Satellite champion, in the second round.

Pawar eventually prevailed over his seasoned opponent 21-18, 12-21, 21-14 after a 50-minute encounter but not before the handful of spectators witnessed some quality badminton.

With both players known for their attacking game, the opener went to the wire in which Pawar gained the upper hand with some quality down-the-line smashes. But the Mumbai boy could not adjust to the court conditions after the changeover and allowed Kurian to come back.

Aware of the slight drift on the other side, Pawar adopted an attacking approach in the decider and raced to a 11-3 lead at the changeover and then only concentrated on maintaining the advantage.

In other matches, top seed Aravind Bhat sailed through the first round.

In the women's section, the top four seeds were hardly tested as they booked berths in the third round. Only seventh seed Abantika Deka of Assam was knocked out after she conceded her tie against Anuradha Shrikhande of Air India.