Manika Batra creates HISTORY, The star paddler becomes the first Indian woman to claim BRONZE at the Asian Cup after defeating Japan’s Hina Hayata 4-2 in the playoff!
Ace Indian paddler Manika Batra, on Saturday, clinched the bronze medal in women’s singles at the ongoing 2022 Asian Cup. The Commonwealth Games gold medallist defeated Japan’s Hina Hayata 4-2 in the third-place playoff.
Up against the world number 7 Hayata, Batra displayed immense composure to become the first Indian woman to medal at the Asian Cup. The 27-year-old did not have the best of starts in the bronze medal contest as she trailed 0-3 in the first game. But what followed was a spirited fight back as Batra took the first game 11-6.
Hayata upped her aggression to win the second 11-6 before Manika won the third 11-7 to take a 2-1 lead in the contest. The fourth game was something straight out of dreams. Batra trailed 4-10 before winning eight points in a row to clinch it 12-10. She saved a whopping 6 game points in the process to stamp her authority in the contest.
Hina Hayata, however, brushed aside Batra 11-4 in the fifth game. But, the Indian was undeterred. She took an early lead in the sixth game and maintained it right till the end to take the game 11-2 and the match 4-2.
Batra aso became the first Indian to win a medal at the Asian Cup in 22 years. The last Indian to finish on podium at the continental event was Chetan Baboor with a bronze in men’s singles back in 2000. He had also won a silver in 1997. Earlier in the day, Manika Batra had lost her semifinal against world number 5 Mima Ito with a score line of 2-4.