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Indian shuttlers blanked by China
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April 28, 2006 16:36 IST

Chetan Anand's brave fight against the world number one was the only highlight for India, who were thrashed 0-5 by defending champions China in their first league match of Thomas Cup badminton finals in Sendai, Japan [Images], on Friday.

Anand, ranked 24, Lin Dan a scare when he snatched the second game, but the champion finally emerged unscathed 21-8, 23-21, 21-11 to win the first match of the tie.

Thereafter, it was a one-sided affair as China allowed India no further room and stamped their supremacy, routing other players in straight games.

The doubles combination of Rupesh Kumar and V Diju went down 5-21, 16-21 to Fu Haifeng and Cai Yun in the second match.

World No 9 Jin Chen got the better of national champion Anup Sridhar 21-14, 21-10 to seal the tie in China's favour.

The scratch doubles combine of Thomas Kurien and Jaseel Ismail lost 6-21, 10-21 to Bo Zhang and Guo Zhendeng in an inconsequential match.

Arvind Bhat went down 15-21, 10-21 in the last singles to Xia Xuanze.

India, who last qualified for the world team badminton championship in 2000, will next play Germany [Images] in their last league match on Saturday. Beating Germany will be the key for India to reach the knock-out stage.

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