Manika Batra becomes first Indian female Paddler to win bronze medal at Asian Cup 2022

The Indian paddler also became the second Indian after Chetan Baboor to reach the last four of the championships.

Aakash SrivastavaAuthor

Updated - 19 November 2022 06:56 PM

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The prolific Indian paddler Manika Batra became the first Indian paddler to clinch a medal in the Asian Cup after stunning world number six Hina Hayata of Japan in the bronze play-off on Saturday. World number 44 beat Hayata 4-2 (11-6, 6-11, 11-7, 12-10, 4-11, 11-2) to etch her name in the history books. Manika will get USD 10,000 for clinching bronze in the continental tournament. 

On Saturday, Manika lost in the semi-final stage against fourth-seeded Miami Ito of Japan. The unseeded Manika, who became the first Indian to reach the semi-finals of the continental tournament, lost 8-11, 11-7, 11-6, 11-8, 7-11 (2-4) to the Japanese paddler. 

Manika ensured the best finish by an Indian in the 39-year-old history of the Asian Cup after Achanta Sharath Kamal and G Sathiyan had finished sixth in 2015 and 2019 respectively. The Indian woman paddler had earlier shocked world number 7 Chen Xingtong of China in a round of 16 matches on Thursday. 

She also became the second Indian after Chetan Baboor to reach the last four of the championships. After losing the opening set, Batra made a remarkable comeback and clinched a 3-1 victory in three sets in a row. 

"This win is a huge one for me, defeating the top players. I enjoyed playing and fighting well against them to achieve a fantastic result. I will continue putting the extra yard in all my future tournaments. I expect all of you to extend your full support," emotional Manika Batra said. Based on world rankings and qualifications, the continental competition featured the top 16 players in the men's and women's singles from the continent.

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