Indian badminton player Ashwini Ponappa and her doubles partner Jwala Gutta suspect foul play in the way Japan lost to Chinese Taipei in their group match at the London Olympics and plan to appeal against the result.
Gutta and Ponnappa had beaten Singapore pair of Shinta Mulia Sari and Lei Yao 21-16, 21-15 in their group B match. But the Indian pair was out of the competition because they conceded 2 points more than they should have in the group stage.
Speaking to NDTV, Ponappa said: "I suspect foul play in the way Japan lost to Chinese Taipei. Me and Jwala would like to appeal against the result."
Gutta-Ponappa had notched up a comfortable straight-game victory over Lei Yao and Shinta Mulia Sari of Singapore in their last group B match but still failed to enter the quarterfinals of the London Olympics. The Commonwealth Games gold medallists saw off the world number 13 Singapore pair 21-16 21-15 in a 34-minute match at the Wembley Arena.
However, the Indian pair ended up in the number three position in the group based on the difference between points won and lost in all matches after tying with Chinese Taipei pair of Wen Hsing Cheng and Yu Chin Chien and Japanese combo of Mizuki Fujii and Reika Kakiiwa.
Ponappa claimed that Japan lost on purpose. "Japan wanted to avoid playing against the Chinese Taipei in the quarters," she said.
Ponappa's statement comes in the wake of the fixing claims that have rocked the London Games. Eight women badminton players at the Olympics were charged by the sport's governing body on Wednesday with 'throwing' matches to secure an easier draw in the next round.
Four pairs in the women's doubles competition - one from China, one from Indonesia and two from South Korea - could be disciplined after the Badminton World Federation (BWF) took action.
There were also calls for the players to be disqualified and for opponents who finished in third place in the round-robin groups to be awarded quarter-final places instead.
The eight players have been charged with "not using one's best efforts to win a match" and "conducting oneself in a manner that is clearly abusive or detrimental to the sport".
A disciplinary hearing will be held later on Wednesday.
At present all four pairs are included in the order of play with their quarter-finals scheduled for Wednesday evening, starting from 1600GMT at the Wembley Arena.