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Cheng, Alvaro hand Goa the advantage
Goa Challengers made its title ambitions clear, opening up a huge 5-1 lead over Chennai Lions, in the second semi-final of the Ultimate Table Tennis-3, here on Saturday.
Overseas stars, World no. 9 Cheng I-Ching and Alvaro Robles, won their respective singles matches to propel Goa, which surged ahead on a confident note.
In the opening women’s singles, Cheng I-Ching brought her A game to the table, coming back twice from behind to overpower Petrissa Solja 11-7, 11-9, 11-8 to score a 3-0 win for Goa, putting it firmly in the driver’s seat.
Petrissa, placed 24th in world rankings, raced ahead in the first set and again in the third, before Cheng drew upon her experience to negate the advantage on both occasions. Cheng launched a strong comeback and displayed some exquisite shots en route to her crucial win.
In the men’s singles, Goa’s Alvaro Robles took the first set against Tiago Apolonia of Chennai on a golden point. Apolonia fetched back one game to register Chennai’s first point but the very acrobatic and agile Robles took the game from beyond his opponent’s reach, winning the game by a margin of 2-1 (11-10, 6-11, 11-3).