Aditi halts battling Janani in final

Aditi halts battling Janani in final

TRIUMPHANT: Winners of Sub-junior national badminton singles titles. FROM LEFT: Sai Vishnu Pullela (U-15), Tasnim Mir (U-15), Aditi Bhatt (U-17) and Rohan Gurbani (U-17). DH PHOTO

Janani Ananthakumar's dream run came to an end as she faltered at the final step at the Sub-junior Nationals Badminton Championships here on Sunday. 

At the Karnataka Badminton Association court, fifth seed Aditi Bhatt of Uttarakhand defeated Janani 21-14, 21-18 in the under-17 girls' singles title clash. Karnataka girl Janani, having received a wildcard, had defeated some of the title contenders en route to the final in a superb display. 

But on this day, she found the going tough against Aditi, who had toppled top seed Mansi Singh in the quarterfinals.

"I have to develop more patience. She is a beautiful rally player and she kept returning everything. I played according to her pace and that was a mistake. I had to play faster," Janani, a first-year PU student at Sindhi College, told reporters. 

Aditi took the first game 21-14 and it appeared like a walk in the park for her after she raced to a 17-10 lead in the second. Janani, having staged brilliant comebacks in the quarterfinal and semifinal, once again looked like scripting a fine recovery. Egged on by a vociferous crowd, Janani picked up points in bunches to reduce the gap to 16-17. During that brief period, Aditi's game dipped a bit as she lost points on rallies and produced some meek returns. 

To the disappointment of the home crowd, Aditi regained focus and produced a clinical display to close out the game and tie 21-18. 

"In the second game I got nervous when the crowd started cheering her (Janani)," began Aditi. "I was also a bit tired because my semifinal went to three games. But I am glad I managed to pull this off," added Aditi, who had won a bronze in the U-17 singles at the Asian Junior Championships in Myanmar in October.

A trainee at the Prakash Padukone Badminton Academy here, Aditi had earlier won the all-India ranking singles and doubles titles at Nagpur.  

In the boys' U-17 singles final, favourite and top seed Rohan Gurbani of Maharashtra won the title beating Shubham Patel of Rajasthan 21-12, 27-25. Gurbani, a cousin of Vidarbha pace bowler Rajneesh Gurbani, said he now aimed to clinch the U-19 nationals crown in Lucknow. 

Sai Vishnu triumphs 

In the under-15 boys' section, Sai Vishnu Pullela, son of the chief national coach Pullela Gopichand, clinched his maiden singles title at the national level. The ninth seed from Telangana, watched by his grandmother from the stands, beat Sai Satya Sarvesh Yakala of Puducherry 21-14, 21-19.

"He controlled the match really well. His half-smashes worked well," said his coach Rajendra Kumar. 

The Karnataka pair of Gayathri Rani Jaiswal and Karnika Sree S settled for silver in the girls' U-15 doubles section. 

Results: All finals: Boys: U-17: Singles: 1-Rohan Gubrani (MAH) bt 15-Shubham Patel (RAJ) 21-12, 27-25. 

Doubles: Gireesh Nayudu B (AP)/Sankarprasad Udayakumar bt 7-Ayush Pattnayak (ORI)/Venkata Harsha Vardhan Ra V (AP)  21-17, 25-23.    

U-15: Singles: 9-Sai Vishnu Pullela (TS) bt 3-Sai Satya Sarvesh Yakala (PYI) 21-14, 21-19. 

Doubles: 3-Shivam Mehta (UTR)/Pranav Sharma (UTR) bt 4-Sataksh Singh (DLI)/ Sai Satya Sarvesh Yakala (PY) 23-21, 21-19.

Girls: U-17: Singles: 5-Aditi Bhat (UTR) bt Janani Ananthakumar (KAR) 21-14, 21-18. 

Doubles: 3-Treesa Jolly (KER)/Mehreen Riza (Ker) bt Abhilasha A (TS)/Bhargavi K (TS) 21-8 21-14. 

U-15: Singles: 1-Tasnim Mir (GUJ) bt Sakshi Phogat (RAJ) 21-14, 21-12. 

Doubles: 5-Hrissha Dube (MAH)/Ishani Waldia (DLI) bt Gayathri Rani Jaiswal (KAR)/Karnika Sree S (KTK) 21-14, 21-17.

Mixed doubles: U-17: 1-Edwin Joy (KER)/Varshini VS (KER) bt Manav Raj Sumith (KER)/Treesa Jolly (KER) 23-21, 21-19.