NEW DELHI: National champion Petroleum will be looking for revenge against the ladies from Railways when the 37th all-India inter-institutional table tennis championship opens at the Siri Fort Sports Complex here on Friday.
Petroleum had suffered a shock 3-1 loss to Railways in Bangalore last September with the Railways’s spearhead Mamta Prabhu pulling off wins over Poulomi Ghatak and Mouma Das in the final. Since then, Mamta has moved to Banks’ Sports Board and Petroleum regained the National team title at the expense of Railways at Ajmer in March. However, Petroleum will be eager to regain the title only after settling a score against Railways here.
In comparison, the Petroleum men’s team, including National champion A. Sharath Kamal, Subhajit Saha and Soumyadeep Roy, is set to sail through without much trouble.
Though Petroleum begins as the favourite for the team titles and the individual events that takes place on August 27 and 28, the ladies section is capable of providing a few surprises.
Railways will depend entirely on the experience of Anandita Chakraborty, who almost single-handedly upset Petroleum’s calculation at Ajmer. With younger players like Soumi Mondal and Sumana Bose in its ranks, Railways poses a formidable challenge.
The seedings: Men: 1. A. Sharath Kamal (Pet), 2. Subhajit Saha (Pet), 3. Pathik Mehta (AI), 4. Anirban Nandi (Rlys), 5. A. Amal Raj (Rlys), 6. Sanil Shetty (AI), 7. G. Jitendra (BSB), 8. Shibaji Dutta (BSB). Women: 1. Poulomi Ghatak (Pet), 2. Mouma Das (Pet), 3. K. Shamini (Pet), 4. Mantu Ghosh (Pet), J. Swarna (TN), 6. Mamta Prabhu (BSB), 7. Soumi Mondal (Rlys), 8. Mousumi Paul (Rlys). — Special Correspondent