India table tennis women’s and men’s team had an easy outing on day one of the Commonwealth Games on Thursday. India thrashed Sri Lanka 3-0 and later on beat Wales 3-1 in the women’s team event. The men’s team were at their sublime best as they beat Trinidad & Tobago 3-0 and then replicated the same form against Northern Ireland.
Manika Batra hardly broke a sweat in her 11-3, 11-5, 11-3 victory over Erandi Warusawithana in the first singles before Sutirtha Mukherjee made it 2-0 up for India with an easy 11-5, 11-8, 11-4 win against Ishara Manikku Badu. Sutirtha then paired with Pooja Sahasrabudhe in the doubles to notch up an 11-6, 11-7, 11-3 win against the Sri Lankan duo of Hansani Kapugeekiyana and Ishara Manikku Badu to wrap up the tie in style.
“It felt really good. We played really well and I’m happy with our performance. I’m confident going into the match (against Wales) this afternoon. We’re all in good shape,” Manika had said. Asked about a suspected shoulder injury, she said, “Thankfully I wasn’t injured. I just wanted to stretch out a bit.
In their second group match of the day, the women’s team beat Wales 3-1. The pair of Mouma Das and Madhurika Patkar lost their doubles encounter to Anna Hursey (11-year-old!) and Charlotte Carey in the third match 3-2 (8-11, 5-11, 11-5, 11-7, 11-13). However, Patkar made amends as she beat Chole Thomas 3-0 to win the tie for India.
Men’s team ease through
The men’s team outclassed Trinidad & Tobago 3-0 in their first group match of the day. Wins for G Sathiyan, Anthony Amalraj in the opening singles matches ensured a 2-0 cushion for India. Then the doubles pair of Harmeet Desai and Sathiyan outclassed Yuraaj Dookram and Aaron Wilson 3-0 to win the tie for India. In their second group encounter, India beat Northern Ireland 3-0 with Sathiyan and veteran Achanta Sharath Kamal winning their singles matches before Sathiyan and Desai clinched the tie in the doubles fixture.