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CWG 2018, squash: Ghosal and Pallikal settle for silver

By Sajith B Warrier
Saurav Ghosal and Dipika Pallikal had to settle for silver

Gold Coast, April 14: Favourites Dipika Pallikal and Saurav Ghosal had to settle for silver after the fifth seeds from India went down to Australia's Dona Urquhart and Cameron Piley 8-11, 10-11 in the squash mixed doubles finals.

Earlier in the semifinal, Pallikal and Ghosal, had defeated New Zealanders Joelle King and Paul Coll, the reigning world champions, 9-11, 11-8, 11-10 in a 53-minute encounter.

From 3-6 down in the third and final game, the Kiwis came back to take a 7-6 lead before India moved on to match-ball at 10-9. King and Coll grabbed the next point to force a sudden death 10-10 'match-ball' for both pairs - but after a lengthy rally, King hit the ball into the tin to put Pallikal and Ghosal into the final.

But in the final, the Aussie duo proved a tough nut to crack for the Indians.

The Yamba-born Urquhart and her first cousin Pilley, who recovered from the loss of the first game to beat Alison Waters and Daryl Selby, the No.2 seeds from England, 10-11, 11-7, 11-7 in 55 minutes in the semifinal continued from where they had left off to pummel the Indian pair into submission.

On explaining the pair's relationship, Pilley said: "We grew up together in Yamba - our mums are sisters and we grew up as next door neighbours."

Urquhart expanded: "Cam is four years older than me but we played a lot of squash in those early days. I remember he played with his left hand and I tried so hard to beat him!"

After losing the first game 8-11, Pallikal and Saurav gave their opponents tough fight in the second set, but in the end their efforts didn't prove enough.

Pallikal has another chance to win gold when she, along with her partner Joshna Chinappa, will take on New Zealand's Joelle King and Amanda Landers-Murphy in women's doubles final on Sunday.

Talking about their performance in Gold Coast, Saurav said, "It's about winning a medal for India - and that's we work for. We take a lot of pride in playing for our country. It's not about money or fame - it's about contributing to that medal table.

"Dipika (Pallikal) and I are a very good pair," Saurav added about his partner and sister-in-law.

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    Story first published: Saturday, April 14, 2018, 16:01 [IST]
    Other articles published on Apr 14, 2018
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