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Tables tennis: Batra claims mixed doubles bronze, Sharath gets bronze in singles

Sathiyan Gnanasekaran and Manika Batra of India celebrate winning a point in the mixed doubles bronze medal match at Commonwealth Games at Oxenford Studios on April 15, 2018 on the Gold Coast, Australia.   | Photo Credit: Getty Images

Manika Batra’s sensational run at the Commonwealth Games fetched her another medal as she teamed up with G. Sathiyan to collect the mixed doubles bronze, thereby claiming a medal in every event she competed in here.

Batra and Sathiyan defeated the compatriot senior duo of Sharath Kamal and Mouma Das 11-6 11-2 11-4 to claim the honours in the bronze medal play-off.

This was Batra’s fourth medal of the Games. She had earlier won a historic women’s singles gold and was also a part of the top-finishing women’s team. In women’s doubles, she won a silver with Mouma Das.

Bronze for Sharath Kamal

Meanwhile, Sharath clinched his third medal of the Games by winning a bronze in men’s singles after beating Samuel Walker of England 4-1 (11-7 11-9 9-11 11-6 12-10).

He was part of the gold-winning men’s team event and also clinched a silver in men’s doubles with Sathiyan.

A 10-member Indian table tennis team secured 8 (3 gold, 2 silver and 3 bronze) medals in these Games, which turned out to be the best-ever medal haul in the history of the Games.

Batra said she hoped “to stay together as a mixed pair (with Sathiyan) and play together at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics".

“We’ve been playing our very best but there are not many tournaments for mixed pairs. We’ve been training in Portugal trying out different pairs. This is our first medal as a mixed doubles combination,” she said.

Sathiyan said a bronze medal each should be awarded to both semi-finalists in table tennis, just like in some other sports.

“You start off with a round 64 and you end up here in the most terrible and impossible match. You’ve reached the semi-finals and you can’t do that without winning matches,” he said.

On beating his senior doubles partner Sharath, Sathiyan said, “It was very hard mentally to play against my team-mate. We would have been happier if we had been playing in a gold medal match because at least you both get a medal.”

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Printable version | Nov 24, 2020 9:55:53 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/other-sports/tables-tennis-batra-claims-mixed-doubles-bronze-sharath-gets-bronze-in-singles/article23545982.ece

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