Asian Games 2023: Indian table tennis unit reaches pre-quarterfinals in style

The Indian men and women teams defeated Tajikistan and Nepal respectively

Manika Batra competes against South Africa's Musfiquh Kalam during the women's team table tennis event at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham | AP Manika Batra was rested against Nepal (File)

Indian men's and women's table tennis teams advanced to the pre-quarterfinals of the Asian Games with comprehensive 3-0 victory over Tajikistan and Nepal respectively in Group F matches on Saturday.

Indian women topped the group with two wins in as many matches, and they will face Thailand in the round of 16.

The men also emulated their women counterparts while blanking Tajikistan to top Group F with an all-win record.

Indian women, who had on Friday beaten Singapore, started the match against Nepal on a winning note with Diya Chitale brushing aside Sikka Shreshta 11-1, 11-6, 11-8.

Ayhika Mukherjee doubled India's lead with a 11-3, 11-7, 11-2 victory over Nabita Shreshta.

Sutirtha Mukherjee then sealed it in India's favour when she outclassed Evana Thapa 11-1, 11-5, 11-2.

Manika Batra and Sreeja Akula were rested for this round.

The Indian men, who had earlier defeated Yemen and Singapore, were equally dominant against the Tajik side despite veterans G Sathiyan and A Sharath Kamal not playing.

Manav Thakar gave them a good start while beating Afzalkhon Mahmudov 11-8, 11-5, 11-8.

Manush Shah maintained the tempo with a 13-11, 11-7, 11-5 victory over Ubaydullo Sultonov as India took a 2-0 lead.

Harmeet Desai applied the finishing touches with an easy 11-1, 11-3, 11-5 win over Ibrokhim Ismoilzoda. 

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