The Indian contingent had a historic victory on Thursday evening at Thomas Cup in Bangkok, as they reached the semi-final for the first time since 1979, assuring themselves their maiden medal in the prestigious tournament. The men's team, led by Kidambi Srikanth, stunned five-time champions Malaysia 3-2 in a nail-biting quarter-final contest.
After the clash was tied 2-2, HS Prannoy delivered dominating performance against lower-ranked Leong Jun Hao 21-13, 21-8, in 39 minutes of the game, providing India with a much-needed lead. As Prannoy won the final match, the rest of the Indian contingent, who were eagerly waiting for the last win from Prannoy, stormed onto the court and hugged Prannoy for pulling off an outstanding victory under pressure. The players let out a huge victory cry, highlighting the importance of a win in the tournament.
Watch the moment here:
The video of players storming onto the court immediately went viral and was widely circulated on social media platforms. Even the Badminton Association of India (BAI) took to social media to share a heartwarming clip of India celebrating their historic win over Malaysia in the quarter-finals at the Impact Arena in Bangkok. "There's nothing holding them back, and they are now one step closer to their dream," wrote BWF on an Instagram post.
After the women's team put on a disappointing performance in the quarter-finals as the PV Sindhu-led team lost the Uber Cup quarter-final 0-3 to hosts Thailand, all eyes were on the men's team, who had the daunting task of ensuring a historic win in the elite tournament.
India went 1-0 down when Lakshya Sen lost to Lee Zii Jia in the first singles match, but Satwiksairaj and Chirag put them back on track, winning the first doubles match of the tie. Kidambi Srikanth gave India the 2-1 lead before Prannoy sealed the decisive game.