Giant-killer Sameer loses in Asia Youth badminton final

July 9th, 2011 - 9:04 pm ICT by IANS  

Lucknow, July 9 (IANS) India’s Sameer Verma, who played valiantly to make it to the title round of the Asia Youth U-19 Badminton Championship, went down to second seeded Malaysian Zulkiffli Zulfadli 21-15, 21-17 in the final before a packed UP Badminton Academy courts here Saturday.

Unseeded Sameer became the first Indian ever to reach the final of the chanmpionship.

The top Indian junior, coached by Pullela Gopichand, punched beyond his weight in the tournament, upsetting some tough opponents, including two Chinese Guo Kai in the quarter-final and Liu Kai in the semi-final.

Sameer, 17, whose elder brother Saurabh Verma is making waves in the senior circuit, was not at the top of his game in the final. He made several unforced errors and erred in judging the shuttle. Once the Malaysian managed a handsome lead in the first game, Sameer could not force his way back.

In the second game, Sameer looked like making a comeback when he made Zulkiffli run around the court. But he could not finish the points. Zulkiffli opened a 9-5 lead and held it tightly to win the match.

In women’s singles, China’s Sun Yu defeated compatriot Shen Yaying 21-8, 21-13.

Men’s singles: Zulkiffli Zulfadli (MAS) (2) beat Sameer Verma (IND) 21-15, 21-17.

Women’s singles: Sun Yu (CHN) beat Shen Yaying (CHN) 21-8, 21-13.

Men’s doubles: Lin Chia Yu (4) (TPE) and Lu Ching Yao (TPE) beat Huang Po Jui (TPE) and Huang Chu En (TPE) 21-14, 21-13.

Women’s double’s: Andini Suci Rizki (INA) and Chow Mei Kuan (MAS) (4) beat Nuraidah Tiara Rosalia (INA) and Lee Meng Yean (MAS) 21-18, 16-21, 21-12.

Mixed double’s: Nugroho Lukhi Apri (INA) Pei Tianyi (CHN) beat Amelia Ririn (INA) and Ou Dongni (CHN) 15-21, 21-16, 25-23.

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