Indian paddler Sreeja Akula’s impressive run at the 2024 World Table Tennis Star Contender Goa came to a halt in the quarter-finals as she went down 11-5, 7-11, 11-6, 11-4 against world No 18 Cheng I-ching of Chinese Taipei on Saturday.

Akula’s loss also brought an end to the Indian campaign in Goa.

Earlier in the day, Akula defeated a higher-ranked Doo Hoi Kem of Hong Kong in the Round of 16. The Indian started on a positive note, beofre losing the second. However, the Hyderabad based paddler looked in complete control as she won 12-10, 8-11, 11-8, 11-8 to enter the final eight stage.

“I am really happy to win this match. In 2021, I had lost to the same opponent, so it feels really great to win a match against her in this tournament,” Akula had said after her win.

“I was able to execute my plans perfectly and kept myself motivated even after losing the second game to win the contest. She was really aggressive and I focused on putting the ball on the table and choosing the right ball to attack which worked in my favour. I will be well prepared for the upcoming match as well,” she added.

On the other hand, India’s top-ranked singles paddler Manika Batra, currently ranked 38 in the world, went down 1-3 (11-9, 11-13, 7-11, 9-11) against the World No. 13 Xiaoxin Yang of Monaco despite winning the first game of the contest.

In the other women’s singles pre-quarterfinal, youngster Archana Kamath lost to South Korea’s Jeon Jihee by 1-3 (11-13, 11-9, 6-11, 4-11).