Indian American Nikhil Kumar’s Olympic Table Tennis Singles bid ends

Nikhil Kumar, participating in his first Olympics, won two rounds to advance to the final 48 in the Men’s Singles table tennis event, but was defeated on Sunday evening at the Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium by Anton Kaellberg of Sweden.  Kumar, an eighteen-year-old from northern California did not have an answer for the up-and-coming twenty-three-year-old Swedish pro, Kaellberg, who won the Second Round best-of-seven match in four straight games (11-7, 11-5, 11-6, 11-5).

Kumar fell behind early in Game One and never seemed to get fully on track, although he did rack up four points in a row in that game to get to 7-8 before Kaellberg pulled away. By the third game, it was clear that Kaellberg was in command of his game and control of the match, running off the game’s first six points before Kumar broke through. In the final game, Kumar grabbed his first lead of the match by taking the first three points (3-0), but Kaellberg never seemed in trouble, as he took six of the final seven points of Game Four to close out the young American.

Although Kumar is now eliminated from the Men’s Singles competition, he will get another shot at Kaellberg and his Swedish teammates when the United States takes on Sweden in the Round of Sixteen for the Team Event in table tennis, which is scheduled for August 1. (Source: teamusa.org

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