PBL: Jayaram wins to give Rockets advantage against Warriors

Ajay Jayaram 17Lucknow: Ajay Jayaram of Mumbai Rockets defeated his compatriot Kidambi Srikanth of Awadhe Warriors 5-11, 15-14, 11-5 in the second edition of the Premier Badminton League at the Babu Banarasi Das Indoor Stadium here on Friday.

With this win, Rockets took a crucial 2-0 lead in the tie.

Starting the match, Srikanth was quick to get off the block and raced to a lead of 5-2. It looked like the Guntur-born player will have it easy but Jayaram fought back to take three consecutive points to tie the score 5-5.

Srikanth then took one more point to go into the mid-game break 6-5. After the break, he started from where he had left and dominated the proceedings.

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His movement on the court was superb and the way he mixed his shots was immaculate and the Mumbai player ran out of answers.

Leading the game, Srikanth did not let his opponent get back and took five straight points to take the opening game.

In the second game, the Awadhe Warriors star started brilliantly again to seize the initial momentum and opened up a 5-1 lead only from Jayaram to make a wonderful comeback and take four consecutive points to tie the score 5-5.

However, Srikanth took the next point to go into the breather with the lead. With victory in sight, it should have been an easy walk for the Warriors player but Jayaram gave a tough fight to snatch a superb 15-14 win in the second game.

The third game saw Ajay in the driving seat for the first time as he paced to a 6-3 in the decider.

Srikanth tried to launch a comeback but Jayaram was in no mood to relent as he won the game 11-5.

Earlier, the tie started with men's doubles action, with Lee Yong Dae and Nipitphon Puangpuapech of Rockets taking on the in-form pair of Markis Kido and V Shem Goh of Warriors.

The Rockets pair started the match in a rather confident manner taking the opening game 11-7. Kido and Shem Goh won the next game 11-3 to force the match into the decider.

It was a close final game with Rockets finally winning 13-11 to halt the Warriors winning streak and take a 1-0 lead in the match.