CHENGDU: Sathiyan Gnanasekaran won both his singles matches, including one against World No.9 Dang Qiu, to script India’s stunning 3-1 victory over second seed Germany in Group 2 of the World Table Tennis Championships here on Sunday.
World No.37 Sathiyan won two gruelling contests, defeating the 36th-ranked Benedikt Duda 3-2 (11-13, 4-11, 11-8, 11-4, 11-9) before edging out Germany’s highest-ranked player Qiu (10-12, 7-11, 11-8, 11-8, 11-9) by the same match scoreline. In both the matches, Sathiyan staged a strong comeback after losing the first two games.
“The match against Qiu was definitely tougher. He is a top-10 player. It was a high quality match as well,” Sathiyan told PTI. India No.2 Harmeet Desai lost the second singles match to Qui 1-3 (7-11, 9-11, 13-11, 3-11) before Manav Thakkar helped his team go 2-1 up with a 3-1 (13-11, 6-11, 11-8, 12-10) win over the higher-ranked Ricardo Walther. The 17th-ranked India had defeated Uzbekistan 3-0 in its opening group tie on Saturday.
Meanwhile, in the women’s draw, India recorded its first win of Group 5 with a 3-0 result over the Czech Republic. The Manika Batra-led side had lost 2-3 to Germany on Saturday.
On Sunday, Manika defeated Hana Matelova 3-1 (11-6, 11-6, 8-11, 12-10 ) in the first singles match before Sreeja Akula and Diya Chitale won their singles contests against Marketa Sevcikova and Katerina Tomanovska respectively, 3-0 (11-5, 11-3, 11-8) and 3-1 (11-13, 15-13, 12-10, 14-12).