Popat moves into second round

Updated: 25 February 2007 09:08 IST

Aparna Popat thrashed Michelle Edward of South Africa in straight sets to move into the second round of the Olympic Badminton singles championship

Popat moves into second round

Athens:

National women's champion Aparna Popat thrashed Michelle Edward of South Africa in straight sets to move into the second round of the Olympic Badminton singles championship here today. Popat took just 23 minutes to pack off Edwards 11-6 11-3 to set a second round clash with fourth seed Mia Audina of Netherlands. Popat, ranked 27th in the world, always looked in control against her lower ranked opponent but her performance was surely not as commanding as it was expected to be. The 26-year-old made an indifferent start missing a couple of simple drop shots, allowing the African champion to take a 2-0 lead. However, once Popat got in her groove she raced to a 8-2 lead and then consolidated it further to have a cushion of six set points. But a lapse in concentration saw her opponent pull back two set points but the five time national champion came up with yet another fantastic drop shot to take the first set in just 12 minutes. In the second set, Edwards ran out of steam as Popat took just 11 more minutes to wrap up the match. Despite the win, Popat's display would not have given coach Vimal Kumar much confidence as the Indian will be facing 1996 Atlanta Olympics silver medallist and strong medal contender Audina in the next round tomorrow. The Indonesia-born shuttler, who represented her country of birth at Atlanta, was in devastating form against Nigella Saunders of Jamaica taking the tie 11-4 11-1. (PTI)

Topics : Badminton
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