CHINA: In a surprising turn of events at the 2023 Asian Games, the dynamic duo of Rohan Bopanna and Yuki Bhambri suffered a shocking elimination in the men's doubles second-round match. Bopanna, who had previously held the title of reigning champion in the event, faced an unexpected defeat that left many in disbelief.
The Indian pair started strong by securing the first set with a commanding 6-2 victory. However, their fortunes took a dramatic downturn as they faltered in the subsequent two sets. The Bopanna-Bhambri tandem lost the second set with a score of 3-6 and ultimately succumbed to a 6-10 defeat against Uzbekistan's formidable Sergey Fomin and Khumoyun Sultanov. Despite this setback, there were silver linings for Indian tennis at the Asian Games in Hangzhou.
On the same day, Indian tennis enthusiasts had reasons to celebrate as Saketh Myneni and Ramkumar Ramanathan, along with Rutuja Sampatrao Bhosale and Karman Kaur Thandi, clinched victories in their respective matches in the doubles event. In the men's doubles second round, the Indian duo triumphed over Indonesia's Ignatius Anthony Susanto and David Agung Susanto in straight sets. Saketh and Ramkumar displayed their prowess by winning the first set 3-6 and sealing the deal with a 2-6 victory in the second.
In the women's doubles first round, Bhosale and Thandi outplayed Kazakhstan's Zhanel Rustemova and Aruzhan Sagandykova, securing a two-set win. The opening set concluded with a score of 6-4, followed by a comfortable 6-2 win in the second set.
Moreover, Indian tennis stars delivered outstanding performances in the singles event as well. Ankita Raina, Rutruja Bhosale, and Ramkumar Ramanathan advanced to the pre-quarterfinals stage of the Asian Games 2023 on Monday. Ankita displayed dominance by defeating Uzbekistan's Sabrina Olimjonova in a swift two-set match, with scores of 6-0, 6-0, in just 51 minutes.
In a closely contested battle, Bhosale overcame Kazakhstan's Aruzhan Sagandykova with a score of 7-6 (2) in the first set and a more decisive 6-2 victory in the second, concluding the match in 45 minutes. Ramkumar, on the other hand, received a walkover from his opponent, Sunatullo Isroilov of Tajikistan, who was unable to compete.
Reflecting on India's tennis history at the Asian Games, the country has amassed an impressive total of 32 medals, comprising nine gold, six silver, and 17 bronze medals. India's performance in the 2023 Asian Games has been notable, with a total of 10 medals secured thus far, including a gold in the men's 10m Air Rifle Team event.