Kuwait: Indian women
created history by winning their maiden title as they beat Hong
Kong 2-0 in the final of the Asian Team Squash championship here
Saturday. India, however, went down 0-2 to Pakistan in the men's
In the women's final, Joshna Chinnappa, ranked 71st, put in a
vintage performance as she overcame World No.16 Joey Chan 11-3,
11-8, 8-11, 11-8 in 38 minutes to put India 1-0 ahead.
Following up on this stirring victory, Dipika Pallikal, ranked 14,
defeated World No.7 Anne Au 11-8, 12-10, 11-8 in 32 minutes to
wrap up the title.
Joshna was unperturbed by the difference in rankings and stamped
her class right from the beginning. She took advantage of the fact
that the evening before, Joey had to endure five hard games
against her Malaysian counterpart Delia Arnold.
Joshna's aggressive play was laced with delicate drops and
deception that was simply too much for Joey to handle as she
dropped the first game 11-3 in less than 10 minutes.
The Indian was was equally impressive in the second game that she
won 11-8 just as Joey seemed to be warming up.
The Hong Kong star was the better player in the third game and her
shots were more effective as she had Joshna scurrying around the
court. Unaffected by the loss of third game, Joshna came back with
a vengeance and wrapped up the fourth game and match to give India
the much needed first point.
Dipika went in next against Annie Au who is World ranked 6. Dipika
has never beaten Annie in a tournament before but this does not
Dipika's aggression seemed effective against Annie who is renowned
for a steady lob and drop game. The Indian kept the pressure on
throughout the match with her aggressive play and Annie did not
have any answers.
Annie made a gallant fight back in the third, but Dipika held her
nerves to claw back from 4-7 winning 6 straight points to help
India collect their first ever Asian senior women's title.
In contrast, the Indian men went down to Pakistan in a close final
that could have gone either way as both the singles went the
Saurav Ghosal squandered a 2-0 advantage and went down in five
games to Pakistan's Farhan Mehboob in the first singles.
The story was much the same in the second singles as Siddharth
Suchde, trailing 0-2, did well to extend Pakistan No.1 Farhan
Zaman to five games.
The results (finals):
Men - Pakistan beat India 2-0: Farhan Mehboob bt Saurav Ghosal
10-12, 6-11, 11-7, 11-6, 11-9; Farhan Zaman bt Siddharth Suchde
11-7, 11-6, 11-13, 7-11, 11-9.
Women - India beat Hong Kong 2-0: Joshna Chinnappa bt Joey Chan
11-3, 11-8, 8-11, 11-8; Dipika Pallikal bt Anne Au 11-8, 12-10,