India shuttlers seal second-tier berth for 1st time
India were promoted to the second tier of the Sudirman Cup world team badminton championships for the first time in 20 years when they beat Bulgaria 3-0 in their group three play-off on Thursday.other Updated: May 14, 2009 23:33 IST
India were promoted to the second tier of the Sudirman Cup world team badminton championships for the first time in 20 years when they beat Bulgaria 3-0 in their group three play-off on Thursday.
Saina Nehwal was again in imperious form in the women's singles, demolishing Linda Zetchiri 21-14, 21-17 in the mixed team championship, being held in Guangzhou, China. In men's doubles, Sanave Thomas and Rupesh Kumar beat Vladimir Metodiev and
Yulian Hristov 13-21, 11-21.
In men's singles, Arvind Bhat came from behind to beat Krasimir Yankov 21-16, 16-21, 19-21.
Out of 18 matches India played they lost only one to Australia, in the women's doubles. India beat Australia 4-1 and routed Ukraine and Scotland 5-0 en route to the Bulgaria showdown.
Saina sounded elated after Thursday's win. “It's a great feeling, for this is the first time India have ever been promoted. I am enjoying the moment,” she said.
Saina also said the tie against Scotland was very crucial and that Thursday's match was “relatively easy.”
Asked about her slightly below-par performance in the run up to the event, Saina cited a shoulder injury as reason. “I was nursing an injury.
Though I couldn't win any tournament but I wasn't bad either. I am better now, and I still have two months to regain my fitness before going into the world championship”. In the last edition of the Sudirman Cup in Glasgow, an under-strength team reached the final play-off round in Group III only to be routed by France 3-0.