Hyderabad, January 11: Hyderabad Hunters claimed the top spot in the league phase of the Premier Badminton League by blanking Bengaluru Blasters 6:(-1) here on Thursday (January 11).
Both teams, however, have made the semifinals already.
It was no easy going for Hyderabad as their mixed doubles pair and men's singles star B Sai Praneeth were stretched to three games before winning their respective matches.
Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Pia Zebadiah Bernadet started off well against the Bengaluru duo of Manu Attiri and Sikki Reddy by winning the first game 15-6. But the Reddys fought back to level the scores 14-15.
In the decider, the Hyderabad duo took charge, supported by a vociferous crowd, and won 15-9 to help Hyderabad gain their first point.
Sai Praneeth faced a tougher opponent in Chong Wei Feng, who made the World No 16 sweat for every point throughout the match before winning 10-15, 15-7, 15-14.
In the decider, the left-handed Malaysian was down for the count at 12-14 but he pulled level to take the game into the tie-breaker. Serving for the match, the World No 45 smacked a Praneeth return into the net to end his gallant fightback
Carolina Marin extended Hyderabad's domination with a 15-9, 15-7 win against Kirsty Gilmour in the women's singles.
In the last match of the day, Markis Kido and Yoo Yeon Seong overturned the trumps and beat Mathias Boe and Kim Sa Rang of Blasters 15-10, 11-15, 15-7 to send Bengaluru into negative territory.
Before that, Lee Hyun Il thumped Subhankar Dey 15-11, 11-15, 15-11 in a men's singles contest, sealing the win for the Hunters.