PV Sindhu, Parupalli Kashyap and the mixed doubles pair of Chris and Gabrielle Adcock helped the Chennai Smashers easily move past the Lucknow-based Awadhe Warriors 4-3 in the penultimate league stage clash of the Premier Badminton League, in Bengaluru on Wednesday. Both the Warriors and Smashers have qualified for the semi-finals, however the Warriors head the points table with 22 while the Smashers are third with 18.
It was the Adcock couple, who brought Chennai back by levelling the tie with a 11-4, 11-9 win in the second match against Bodlin Isara and Prajakta Sawant.
Taking advantage of the mixed doubles pair's victory, Parupalli Kashyap won the trump match 11-7, 5-11, 11-7, which put Chennai ahead of Awadhe 3-1.
Kashyap took 6-5 lead into the first break after Aditya Joshi gave a tough fight, but the Chennai player hogged the limelight by clinching the first game, rather convincingly.
Joshi roared back by impressing one and all with a 6-1 lead in the second break. Kashyap fought back, making it 4-6, but could not build the tempo and lost to Joshi, who smashed down the line to hog the game point of the third match.
In the decider, there was some awesome badminton from Joshi and Kashyap, but the Awadhe shuttler went into the break leading 6-5.
Kashyap's vicious smashes helped Chennai shuttler make it 8-6 and eventually the Hyderabad lad pulled off a thrilling win over Joshi.
Down 0-1 in the tie, Chennai mixed doubles pair brought the team on par with their rival 1-1, after two matches.
The couple defeated Awadhe's counterparts - Isara and Sawant, who made her PBL debut. The pair won the first game as it was a cake walk, but had to fight back in the second game with Awadhe pair giving them a nagging time.
In the super match, PV Sindhu straightaway dominated the proceedings, treating her opponent with powerful jump smash to make it 4-2. She then executed two tantalising drop shots to go into the break leading 6-2 against Rituparna Das. Sindhu won the opening game 11-4 easily.
Sindu started off the proceedings by winning four points on a trot in the second game.
Sindhu then made it 9-4 against Ritupurna by her deceptive drop shot and pocketed the match, giving Chennai an unassailable 4-1 lead in the tie.
In the first match of the tie, Wong Wing Ki Vincent began the campaign for Awadhe on a high note by clinching the first match 6-11, 11-9, 12-10 against Chennai's Tanongsak Saesomboonsak.
After conceding the first game, Vincent bounced back by going into the break leading 6-5 in a close encounter. He was leading 3-0, but Tanongsak brought it to 9-9, but his double fault gave a chance to Vincent to clinch the game, thus pushing the match into the decider.
Keeping his cool in the decider, Vincent pulled off a blinder after Tanongsak had raced past him to 6-5 lead in the third break, restraining Chennai to get to a rollicking start in their quest to end second on the points-table.
In the inconsequential trump match, Kido Markis and V Shem Goh of Awadhe Warrior defeated Mads Pieler and B Sumeeth Reddy of Chennai 12-10, 11-8.
(With PTI inputs)