Bengaluru Raptors’ players celebrate after winning the PBL 2019 trophy.
Bengaluru Raptors’ players celebrate after winning the PBL 2019 trophy.

PBL 2019: Bengaluru Raptors beat Mumbai Rockets to win maiden title

Bengaluru skipper Srikanth gave a vital men’s singles win to his team before the Men’s doubles pair, Hendra Setiawan and Mohammad Ahsan sealed the win in front of a rapturous home crowd.
By Avishek Roy | Hindustan Times, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JAN 13, 2019 11:12 PM IST

Immediately after the first match of the final between Bengaluru Raptors and Mumbai Rockets came a moment that captured the legacy of Indian badminton --- Prakash Padukone and Pullela Gopichand, the only All England champions from India, flanking the glittering Premier Badminton League trophy.

The presence of two greats who have laid a strong foundation for the sport in the country, a packed stadium, and decibel levels that went through the roof, it was a grand celebration of Indian badminton. The final lived up to the hype as home team Bengaluru Raptors defeated Mumbai Rockets 4-3 to win their maiden PBL title. Mumbai finished runners-up for the third time.

With scores 3-3 after four matches, it boiled down to the men’s doubles that showcased three former giants of the game. The famed Indonesian pair of Mohammad Ahsan and Hendra Setiawan, representing the home team, against South Korean great Lee Yong Dae and his new partner Gi Jung Kim, promised a thriller. With the crowd firmly behind them, Ahsan and Setiawan sealed the tie 15-13, 15-10 amid rapturous celebrations.

It was not a good start for Bengaluru Raptors as they lost the mixed doubles featuring Marcus Ellis and Lauren Smith against Mumbai’s Pia Zebadiah Bernadet and Kim Gi Jung. The experienced Pia and Kim wrapped up their trump match 15-8, 15-14 after surviving some tense moments in the final stretch. Their win gave Mumbai a 2-0 lead.

Kidambi Srikanth, however, kept Bengaluru in the hunt, handing 21-year-old Anders Antonsen a lesson in badminton. He extended his winning streak to eight matches. Showing intent and aggression from the start, Srikanth won 15-7, 15-10. The accuracy, deft touch and power of his smashes left the Dane stranded on several occasions. The Indian, egged on by the vociferous crowd, was never in trouble and pulled one back for the home team.

Shreyansi Pardeshi, playing for Mumbai Rockets, had a tough opponent in Vu Thi Thang of Thailand, ranked 59. But to her credit, Shreyansi fought hard and the long rallies in the second game kept the spectators interested. Though she lost 15-8, 15-9, the Rockets girl gave her all.

After winning their trump match, Bengaluru grabbed the lead for the first time (3-2). It was up to world No 12 Sameer Verma to keep Mumbai Rockets afloat against compatriot B Sai Praneeth. Sameer didn’t disappoint and rallied to win 7-15, 15-12, 15-3. Praneeth made a terrific start, opening a 8-1 lead. The gap was too big for Sameer to bridge and Praneeth comfortably pocketed the first game.

Sameer bounced back in the second game and quickly went up 5-2. Praneeth caught up with his free-flowing strokeplay to nose ahead 10-8. But Praneeth also made errors while going for the lines. Sameer, on the other hand, cleverly kept the shuttle in play and in no time drew level. In the decider, it was the fitter Sameer who went all out against a tiring Praneeth.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
Close
Top seed Manika Batra playing during the 82nd Senior National Table Tennis Championships at Tau Devi Lal Indoor Stadium in Panchkula on Wednesday. (Sant Arora/HT)(HT_PRINT)
Top seed Manika Batra playing during the 82nd Senior National Table Tennis Championships at Tau Devi Lal Indoor Stadium in Panchkula on Wednesday. (Sant Arora/HT)(HT_PRINT)

Paddlers Desai, Batra off to winning starts in WTT Contender series in Doha

PTI
PUBLISHED ON MAR 01, 2021 08:20 PM IST
Batra registered a 12-10 14-12 11-8 victory over Spain's Sofia-Xuan Zhang in women's singles.
Close
Tokyo Olympics.(Twitter)
Tokyo Olympics.(Twitter)

It's March, the month when the Tokyo Olympics were postponed

AP
PUBLISHED ON MAR 01, 2021 06:06 PM IST
The start of the torch relay on March 25 from northeastern Fukushima prefecture is just over three weeks away. It will involve 10,000 runners and end in Tokyo at the opening ceremony on July 23.
Close
FILE PHOTO: Tiger Woods.(REUTERS)
FILE PHOTO: Tiger Woods.(REUTERS)

Tiger Woods appreciative of Sunday's show of color

Reuters
PUBLISHED ON MAR 01, 2021 03:27 PM IST
With so many players wearing Woods' trademark red and black colors on Sunday all throughout golf, it served as the moving get-well card that it was intended to be.
Close
Vijender Singh(HT Photo)
Vijender Singh(HT Photo)

Vijender Singh marks return to ring with fight scheduled in Goa Casino ship

By Avishek Roy | PTI
UPDATED ON MAR 01, 2021 04:51 PM IST
The backdrop of the fight will be equally novel for Vijender. The fight, with an opponent who is yet to be named, will take place on the rooftop deck of a casino ship docked on the Mandovi river in Panaji, Goa.
Close
Indian wrestler Bajrang Punia.(Vipin Kumar/HT PHOTO)
Indian wrestler Bajrang Punia.(Vipin Kumar/HT PHOTO)

Wrestler Bajrang Punia leaves social media, to focus on Tokyo Olympics

ANI
PUBLISHED ON MAR 01, 2021 01:29 PM IST
Punia said he will return to social media after the conclusion of the quadrennial event. He asked his followers to keep showering their love to him.
Close
MC Mary Kom punches a bag during a training session at Balewadi Stadium in Pune.(REUTERS)
MC Mary Kom punches a bag during a training session at Balewadi Stadium in Pune.(REUTERS)

Mary Kom to lead 14-strong Indian boxing team in Boxam International tourney

PTI
PUBLISHED ON FEB 28, 2021 07:16 PM IST
According to a release issued by the Boxing Federation of India (BFI), the Indian contingent left for Spain in early hours on Sunday.
Close
File image of Vinesh Phogat(Vinesh Phogat/Instagram)
File image of Vinesh Phogat(Vinesh Phogat/Instagram)

Vinesh Phogat resumes Tokyo Olympics re-build with title in Kiev meet

By Avishek Roy, New Delhi
UPDATED ON FEB 28, 2021 10:34 PM IST
The 53kg wrestler is determined to make amends after injury dashed her medal dreams in the 2016 Rio Games.
Close
Mudit Dani
Mudit Dani

Feels like playing my playing first senior international event: Mudit Dani

PUBLISHED ON FEB 28, 2021 04:47 PM IST
During lockdown , the 20-year-old paddler Mudit worked on his technique and fitness. "The break gave me an opportunity to work a lot on strength training, technique, body movements and physical aspects."
Close
Archery generic image(Getty Images)
Archery generic image(Getty Images)

Gold for Rakesh, mixed doubles pair in Fazza world ranking tournament

PTI, Dubai
PUBLISHED ON FEB 28, 2021 04:28 PM IST
  • Indian para archer Rakesh Kumar stood on top of the podium in the Compound event while the pair of Harvinder Singh and Pooja grabbed gold in the recurve mixed team event
Close
File image of Nishad Kumar.(Twitter/PCI)
File image of Nishad Kumar.(Twitter/PCI)

Para athlete Nishad Kumar tests positive for COVID-19

PTI, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON FEB 28, 2021 03:33 PM IST
Nishad Kumar had won a gold medal in the men's high jump T46/47 event at the Fazza World Para Athletics Grand Prix that was recently held in Dubai.
Close
File photo of ISSF World Cup.(File)
File photo of ISSF World Cup.(File)

Indian shooters disappoint in skeet mixed team event of ISSF Shotgun WC

PTI, Cairo
UPDATED ON FEB 28, 2021 03:30 PM IST
The second Indian duo of Ganemat and Angad shot 134 to finish in the 10th spot. Russia team two won the gold in the event beating Poland team two 35-31 in the final
Close
Generic image of a shooter holding a shotgun. (Getty Images)
Generic image of a shooter holding a shotgun. (Getty Images)

Indian shotgun coach tests positive for Covid-19 in Cairo

PTI, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON FEB 28, 2021 02:09 PM IST
  • The coach had been immediately isolated after returning positive for the virus.
Close
Canelo Alvarez (L) reacts after knocking out Josesito Lopez during their WBC super welterweight title fight at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. AFP photo
Canelo Alvarez (L) reacts after knocking out Josesito Lopez during their WBC super welterweight title fight at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. AFP photo

Canelo Alvarez continues to cement legacy, outclasses Yildirim to retain titles

AP, Miami Gardens
PUBLISHED ON FEB 28, 2021 11:32 AM IST
  • Alvarez, of Mexico, dropped the Turkish challenger with a left right combination to the head midway through the third round. Alvarez followed with additional combinations, pinning Yildirim on the ropes.
Close
Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) gestures in the first half against the Portland Trail Blazers at Staples Center.(USA TODAY Sports)
Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) gestures in the first half against the Portland Trail Blazers at Staples Center.(USA TODAY Sports)

LeBron James rejects Zlatan''s criticism of activist athletes

PTI, Los Angeles
PUBLISHED ON FEB 28, 2021 09:05 AM IST
The Los Angeles Lakers superstar also pointed out that Ibrahimovic clearly didn't feel the same way about spotlighting social injustices when the soccer great called out racism in his native Sweden just three years ago.
Close
Skydiver Sajid Chougle
Skydiver Sajid Chougle

Excuse me while I kiss the sky

By Rutvick Mehta, Mumbai
PUBLISHED ON FEB 28, 2021 08:13 AM IST
Meet skydiver Sajid Chougle, who explains what it was like to fly again after being chained to the ground for most of 2020
Close
SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP