Nanda Gopal/FB

Nandagopal Kidambi and Francis Alwin win the Iran Fajr International Challenge 2018

By: Swetha
Date: 09 Feb, 2018
Image Courtesy: Nanda Gopal/FB

In the all India finals of the men’s doubles, world no 270 ranked Nandagopal Kidambi and Alwin Francis won the men’s doubles title against the world no 167 ranked compatriots Tarun Kona, the fourth seeded, and Sourabh Sharma in the best-of-five 11-point format contest with 9-11, 11-6, 7-11, 11-8, 11-9 in just 38 minutes.

Trailing at 0-3 in the first game, elder brother of Srikanth Kidambi, Nandagopal and Francis led with one point by the break with 6-5, followed with the exchange of points till the score is parred at 9-9. Tarun and Sourabh saved the game with straight two points.

In the second game, the duo of Nandagopal and Francis won four straight points and led the game with 4-0, and surged towards 7-6, where the opponents reduced the gap with one point. Continuing the dominance, the duo took the second game with 11-6.

The duo couldn’t maintain the same stride and lost the third before closing the tournament with another two straight wins.

In the fourth game, trailing at 0-4, Nandagopal and Francis scored scored consecutive seven straight points to turn the tables with 7-4 lead and closed the game with 11-8, following the similar script in the final game.

While, Shreyansh Jaiswal and Aryaman Tandon lost to the Vietnamese shuttlers, the second seeded Cao Cuong Pham and the top seeded Tien Minh Nguyen, with 11-9, 6-11, 11-9, 11-8 and 7-11, 13-11, 11-8, 12-14, 11-6 in their respective semi-final men’s singles matches.

In women’s singles semi-finals match, Vaishnavi Reddy Jakka lost to the Malaysian Muralitharan Thinaah with 11-3, 7-11, 11-5, 11-9 in the 24-minute contest.

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