Tokyo Olympics LIVE Updates

Brand Name

PV Sindhu wins bronze, becoming the first Indian woman to win two individual medals.

Latest updates of Olympics, get full details.

Monday, 2nd August 2021

In the end, it felt strangely simple.

Playing a fast, fit, and tricky opponent, P V Sindhu rose to the occasion as she usually does to turn her bronze medal playoff, which was expected to be a humdinger, into a no-contest.

Sindhu became only the second Indian athlete after wrestler Sushil Kumar — and the country's first woman — to win two individual Olympic medals, defeating China's He Bingjiao 21-13, 21-15 in the Tokyo Games.

She also ensured India's third medal of the Games, following silver for weightlifter Mirabai Chanu and bronze for boxer Lovlina Borgohain.

Sindhu, on the other hand, did not recognise all of this right away. The Indian ace stared blankly at her coach, Park Tae San, as a backhand tap landed beyond her opponent's reach to seal the match. Only after the coach let out a joyful yell did the shuttler let out a yell as well. “It still hasn't hit home,” Sindhu admitted, her voice quivering.

The gleam of bronze may not compare to the gleam of silver she won in Rio, but Sindhu's second medal is significant for a number of reasons.

It takes place during what is widely regarded as the golden age of women's badminton, with competitors from half a dozen countries capable of winning on their day. Sindhu, a big-tournament player, was subjected to the same treatment by Chinese Taipei's Tai Tzu Ying in the semifinals on Saturday, after dispatching home favourite Akane Yamaguchi with disdain.

Sindhu was devastated by the loss. “I didn't know whether to be sad that I didn't get to play in the final or happy that I have another chance at a medal,” she explained.

Coach Park, on the other hand, reminded her of the joy of standing on the podium, regardless of the colour of the medal, and the heartbreak of finishing fourth. It didn't help that she had to wait all day on Sunday to play her medal match, which began at 8.30 p.m. Tokyo time.

“I awoke, stretched, ate breakfast, and returned to my room. But all I could think about was the match. You have to let go of everything and stay calm, but that did not happen for me today,” she explained.

The 40-minute bus ride from the Olympic Village to the Musashino Forest Sports Plaza was tense. But the moment she stepped onto the court, she went into beast mode, showing no signs of the semifinal loss still bothering her. And the 26-year-old went on to set a new standard with a near-perfect performance, which was the only way to beat a tricky, left-handed opponent who had slayed giants on his way to the bronze medal playoff.

He Bingjiao had been ruthless with her lightning-quick jump smashes, never letting a competitor off the hook once she had taken the lead. She started the same way she did last time, putting Sindhu under pressure and preventing her from controlling the rallies.

Also read: The Indian women's hockey team has advanced to the semi-finals, however, the shooters have disappointed.


But, by the middle of the first game, Sindhu had found her stride and began to pin her opponent to the backhand side of the court, forcing her to go for lofty overhead shots and leaving no room for those lethal smashes.

The Chinese challenger attempted to counter Sindhu with fierce body smashes, but as she had demonstrated in the quarters against Yamaguchi, the Indian found ways to negotiate what was once her weaker link.

Dodging the shuttle by swaying sharply, Sindhu has demonstrated time and again this season the ability to not only defend the shot but also convert it into an instant counterattack by finding sharp angles on her return, as she did at 17-11 in the first game to deflate He's confidence.

Sindhu breezed through the first game with ease. In the second round, the Chinese attempted to engage Sindhu in longer rallies, but she remained patient. The scores were neck-and-neck until the mid-game break, as they had been in the first game. Sindhu, on the other hand, dominated the match with delightful around-the-head cross-court drops.

Then there was that final roar.

This medal meant a lot to her, she said, because of all the expectations. “I would say this medal was more difficult to win than the one I won in Rio,” Sindhu said. “However, if I can do it, anyone can.”


The News Talkie Bureau


The Indian Express

Top Stories
Download video from a Converthub online ..
Impact Feature: अमेरिकन ..
South Newsmakers of Week: Ram Charan & S..
What Makes Gandhis CWC a Team Amidst the..
Kerala Sees a Dip in Total Covid-19 Case..
Bangladesh “Just not Good Enough”, S..
Udanpirappe Movie Review: A family drama..
5 Superfood-Enriched Products for Health..
5 Superfoods Against Anxiety and Stress..
5 Small Lifestyle Changes You Can Make t..