Chirag, Tanvi Storm Into Finals At Senior National Badminton Championships

Guwahati: Chirag Sen fought off a strong challenge from the second-seeded Kiran George, securing a 21-18, 21-18 victory, as he advanced into the men’s singles final of the 85th Senior National Badminton Championships 2023 held at the RG Baruah Sports Complex in Assam’s Guwahati on Saturday. The prestigious national tournament, organised by the Badminton Association of India (BAI) in Assam after four years, is taking place from December 18 to December 24.

In the 38-minute semi-final encounter, the 2020 Iran international bronze medalist Chirag maintained his focus, refusing to succumb to the pressure mounted by George. He will now face fourth-seeded Tharun M, who defeated Bharat Raghav 21-11, 16-21, 21-19 in a closely contested match. Bhargav, who had defeated tournament top seed Lakshya Sen 21-15, 10-21, 21-17 in the quarter-final on Friday evening, set up the semi-final match against Tharun. Their hour-long semi-final saw fortunes swing between the two players. While Tharun won the first game 21-11, Bhargav fought back, securing a 21-16 victory in the second game. The decider witnessed a fierce contest before Tharun triumphed 21-19, earning a berth in the final, as per a press release.

In the women’s singles category, both semi-final encounters witnessed upsets among the seeded and local talents. Tanvi Sharma overcame eighth-seeded Isharani Baruah 21-15, 20-22, 21-14, while Haryana’s Anmol Kharb upset second-seeded local favourite Ashmita Chaliha 21-17, 21-19. Tanvi took the first game 21-15, but Isharani made a strong comeback, winning the second game 22-20. The 51-minute encounter ended when Tanvi grabbed the decider 21-14, setting up a summit clash against Anmol, the release said.

The fresh winners of the 2023 Odisha Masters, Dhruv Kapila and Tanisha Crasto, cruised into the mixed doubles final with a comfortable 21-11, 21-13 victory over Deep Rambhiya and Akshaya Warang. They will now face the pair of Nitin Kumar and Navdha Manglam, who clinched a hard-fought victory over H.V. Nithin and Maneesha K. with a score of 10-21, 21-18, 21-19, it said.

In the women’s doubles category, the Maharashtrian pair of Ritika Thaker and Simran Singhi defeated P. Amrutha and Pranjal Prabhu Chimulkar 21-11, 21-11 to secure a spot in the final. The duo will face the third-seeded pair of Priya Devi Konjengbam and Shruti Mishra, who registered a 21-13, 21-11 win over Mrunmayee Deshpande and Prerana Alvekar. All final matches are scheduled to be played on Sunday, the release further said.

The writer is a senior independent journalist covering the Northeast.

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