New Delhi: India suffered a close defeat at the hands of Canada in the WSF World Junior Women's Team Championship, and will now take on New Zealand in the 7-8th position match in Wroclaw, Poland.
In the 5th-8th play-off yesterday, Sachika Ingale failed to lift her team to a victory after the clash was finely poised at 1-1 and her own match going down to the wire. Canada's Chloe Chemtob took Sachika by surprise with her attacking play to take the first two games 11/6 and 11/8.
Sachika worked her way back into the match, slowing the tempo to suit her game and reined in her aggression. Sachika's tactical shift paid rich dividends as she won the next two games to take the match into a decider.
In the final game, Sachika, trailing 8-10, played couple of wonderful volleys to save the match points and drew level. But, she followed those two saves with an easy miss on her forehand volley into an open court and a backhand into the tin to lose the game 10-12.
Earlier, Harshit Kaur Jawanda gave India a perfect start with a 3-0 win over Canadian number one Hollie Naughton. Lakshya Ragavendran closed out a comfortable first game 11/6 against Alyssa Mehta in the crucial second match. Alyssa kept it tight in the second and won a couple of good points to take the game 11/8.
Lakhsya's shoulders dropped and her intensity vanished allowing Alyssa to race away with the third game. Trailing 2/7 in the fourth game, Lakshya narrowed the gap but Alyssaa had enough of a lead to close out the match 12/10 and level the tie at 1-1.