India caused the first major upset in the WSF women’s World Team squash championship when it defeated a higher-ranked Ireland in a dramatic tie which went down to the wire in Nimes, France.

The historic event, boasting a record entry of 26 nations, is the first ever to be staged in France, and the first to feature three all-glass show courts. India, seeded 10th, had to dig deep to put it across Ireland, the No. 7 seed, 2-1, thus reversing the result of the same Pool ‘G’ clash two years ago.

Dipika Pallikal paved the way for India with a 11-9, 11-8, 7-11, 11-8 victory over the experienced Irish champion Madeline Perry, but Joshna Chinappa let slip a 2-1 lead and lost to Aisling Blake 9-11, 11-7, 11-6, 8-11, 9-11. However, Anaka Alankamony held her nerve to see off Laura Mylotte 12-10, 11-3, 11-7 to give India a sensational victory.

The results: Pool ‘G’: India bt Ireland 2-1 (Dipika Pallikal bt Madeline Perry 11-9, 11-8, 7-11, 11-8; Joshna Chinappa lost to Aisling Blake 9-11, 11-7, 11-6, 8-11, 9-11; Anaka Alankamony bt Laura Mylotte 12-10, 11-3, 11-7).

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