Chennai Smashers began its campaign against Pune 7 Aces with the famous English husband-wife pair of Chris and Gabby Adcock winning the Trump match and another Englishman, Rajiv Ouseph, outwitting Frenchman Brice Leverdez in the first men’s singles.
The two victories put Smashers 3-0 ahead in their Premier Badminton League match on Thursday.
South Korean Sung Ji Hyun delivered a three-game win against the fancied Carolina Marin for Smashers to record its second victory in three fixtures.
There was plenty of drama and thrill in the third game between Sung Ji and Carolina. When the experienced South Korean grabbed the first game by a whisker at 15-14, it seemed that the side in yellow had the chance to clinch the tie straight away.
However, Spain’s Carolina, going into the match with 7-1 head-to-head against Ji, was relentless, exhibiting dexterity while taking an 8-0 lead. She went on to win 15-7. The third turned into a cliffhanger with the scores tied at 10. Smashers challenged a point and lost, but the South Korean kept her cool to overcome the setback and clinched the match when Carolina’s return sailed out.
The match between Ouseph and Leverdez saw both players exhibit their skill, but it was the former, who prevailed 15-14 after leading 14-12 in the third game.
The results: Chennai Smashers bt Pune 7 Aces 4-3 (Chris & Gabby Adcock-(T) bt Vladimir Ivanov & Line Kjaersfeldt 15-13, 15-14; Rajiv Ouseph bt Brice Leverdez 15-6, 8-15, 15-13; Sung Ji Hyun bt Carolina Marin 15-14, 7-15, 15-13; Chris & Sumeeth Reddy lost to (T)-Ivanov & Chirag Shetty 14-15, 9-15; Wei Feng Chang lost to Ajay Jayaram 15-13, 7-15, 11-15).