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Indian paddlers make winning start

April 19, 2007 19:22 IST

Indian paddlers had a field day at the Liebherr Chile Open Table Tennis championships in Santiago with all of them qualifying for the main draw of the tournament.

While Anirban Nandi, Pathik Mehta, A Amalraj and Jubin Kumar qualified for men's main draw, K Shamini, Mousumi Paul, Kasturi Chakraborty and Madhurika Patkar entered the women's draw on Wednesday.

National Champion Achanta Sharath Kamal, Soumyadeep Roy and Subhajit Saha have got a direct entry into the men's main draw. In the women's draw, Poulomi Ghatak and National champion Mouma Das are the direct entrants.

Ranked 90th currently, Sharath will start his campaign against Brazillian Manoel Bissaco tomorrow. The Commonwealth Champion has been seeded 15th in the event.

Meanwhile, in the qualifiers, Nandi emerged as group winner first beating Dimeys Gongora of Cuba, who is a consistent performer in tournaments in Latin America, 11-9, 11-4, 11-2, 11-3 and then accounting for local favourite Matias Contreras 15-17, 4-11, 11-5, 7-11, 11-6, 11-7, 11-8.

Pathik Mehta also entered the main draw undefeated after he thrashed another local hope Raul Quezada 11-6 11-4 11-3 11-2 before getting a walkover against Ecuador's Marcos Bermudez.

Amalraj and Jubin also qualified albeit as lucky losers.

In the women's qualifiers, all the Indian paddlers entered the main draw undfeated. While K Shamini and Madhurika Patkar went through with a walkover and a win, Mousumi Paul and Kasturi Chakraborty won both their qualifying matches with ease to book a berth in the main draw.

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