A Paralympics history is created for India on the National Sports Day, the birth anniversary of hockey wizard Major Dhyan Chand. Bhavina Patel has signed off with a historic silver medal on India’s debut in the Paralympics’ table tennis competition.
Bhavina today (Sunday) became the first Indian para-paddler to win a medal, going down in the final against the World No. 1 Ying Zhou of China.
The Chinese paddler, a two-time Paralympics gold medallists and strongest contender for the gold at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics, eased past Bhavina 11-7, 11-5, 11-6 in the final.
Paralympics Committee of India president Deepa Malik, herself a medallist Paralympian, hailed Bhavina’s feat. Malika was in Tokyo to witness the Games. She congratulated Bhavina for doing the nation proud. India never in the past had qualified for the Paralympics table tennis. Bhavina on her maiden attempt opened India’s medal tally at the Tokyo Games.
Jhou happened to be the sole competitor to prevail over Bhavina. The Chinese had also won the group stage game against her earlier this week.
Up against an opponent, who has five Paralympic medals to her name including gold medals in the singles at Beijing and London, Bhavina seemed to struggle as she couldn’t execute her strategy.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who called Bhavina in Tokyo to congratulate her, led the nation to hail the special athletes’ special feat.
The remarkable Bhavina Patel has scripted history! She brings home a historic Silver medal. Congratulations to her for it. Her life journey is motivating and will also draw more youngsters towards sports. #Paralympics
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) August 29, 2021
Bhavina Patel inspires the Indian contingent and sportslovers winning silver at #Paralympics. Your extraordinary determination and skills have brought glory to India. My congratulations to you on this exceptional achievement.
— President of India (@rashtrapatibhvn) August 29, 2021
Congratulations to #BhavinaPatel for creating history by winning India’s first silver medal in women’s singles class 4 table tennis event at the ongoing #TokyoParalympics .
A wonderful display of focus , hardwork and mental strength. pic.twitter.com/Ijh9LmfBTo
— Virender Sehwag (@virendersehwag) August 29, 2021
— VVS Laxman (@VVSLaxman281) August 29, 2021
India’s first individual gold medallist at the Olympics has also praise Bhavina.
— Abhinav A. Bindra OLY (@Abhinav_Bindra) August 29, 2021
Bhavina, who was diagnosed with polio when she was 12 months old, had in run up to the final defeated world No 3 Miao Zhang of China 7-11, 11-7, 11-4, 9-11, 11-8 in the semi-final showdown on Saturday.
In the quarterfinal on Friday, she had defeated 2016 Rio Paralympics gold medallist and world N0. 2 Borislava Peric Rankovic of Serbia to assure a medal and script history.