Badminton Asia Mixed Team: India beat UAE 5-0 to qualify for quarter-finals

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DUBAI: Team India defeated UAE 5-0 as Lakshya Sen, Aakarshi Kashyap and India’s three doubles teams proved too strong for the hosts in the second tie of Group B at the Badminton Asia Mixed Team Championships 2023 in Dubai on Wednesday.

The win ensured India a top-two finish in Group B and a place in the quarter-finals. To seal the top spot in the group and avoid Group A winners, India must defeat the mixed team champions of the Commonwealth Games Malaysia on Thursday.

Playing on the badminton courts at the Dubai Exhibition Centre, Commonwealth Games men’s singles champion Lakshya Sen set the tone for India with a 21-16, 21-12 victory over Dev Vishnu in the opening match.

With two-time Olympic medallist PV Sindhu rested for the tie, Aakarshi Kashyap took on the mantle in women’s singles and defeated Madhumitha Sundarapandian 21-6, 21-7 to extend India’s lead.

When Dev Ayyappan and Dhiren Ayyappan were defeated 21-15, 21-14 by the impromptu Indian men’s doubles team of Chirag Shetty and Dhruv Kapila, India had an unbeatable 3-0 lead in the five-match series.

Then, in just 22 minutes, Ashwini Bhat K and Shikha Gautam of the women’s doubles team easily defeated Sanika Dhawan Gurav and Akansha Raj 21-7, 21-4.

There was no loss of intensity in the final match of the tie for India as the mixed doubles duo of Ishaan Bhatnagar and Tanisha Crasto sealed the 5-0 win for India with a 21-13, 21-8 victory over Bharath Latheesh and Nayonika Rajesh in 26 minutes.

India are expected to field a full-strength side against Malaysia on Thursday. The last time the two teams met, India were handed a 3-1 defeat in the Commonwealth Games 2022 mixed-team final in Birmingham. (ANI)

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