The Indian men’s Badminton team has victoriously defeated the 14-time champions of Indonesia and won gold at the Thomas Cup for the very first time. The tournament took place in Bangkok on Sunday.
Competing in their debut final men’s team championship, India won the title after Kidambi Srikanth, standing on 11th position in the world, defeated Jonatan Christie (21-15, 23-21), a high-ranker.
India ran ahead of the Indonesian team with a score of 2-0 with Lakshya Sen overthrowing Anthony Ginting in the first singles match. This was then followed by Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty beating Mohammad Ahsan and Kevin Sukamuljo in the doubles.
The Indonesian team found it extremely challenging to keep up with the pace of the Indian team that played exceptionally well on the final day. Kidambi Srikanth lauded the performance given by his team. He said, “I think everyone really stepped up when it was required. Credit goes to the whole team, players, coaches, and support team. I love them, they have been fantastic. It’s one of the best teams that I have been part of.”
Commenting on the cup, he added, “Thomas Cup is something that India has never won and now to be part of a team that won the Thomas Cup and to contribute to the team’s win just gives me a lot of happiness.
Praises flooded in for the team from across the country. This historic win attracted the attention of everyone right from Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Olympic gold medallist shooter Abhinav Bindra.
Renowned personalities from the political, sports and entertainment sectors have praised the team on Twitter.
Since it’s the first time that India has won the cup since its inception, not many are aware o this badminton tournament. Sometimes called the World Men’s Team Championships, The Thomas Cup is an international badminton competition played among teams representing member nations of the Badminton World Federation.
The Indian Badminton Team had participated in the tournament for the first time in 1952. It is after 70 years that the country has brought home, the cup.
The first tournament was held from 1948–1949 and initially used to be conducted every three years till 1982. Post-1982, it began conducting after every two years. Indonesia, China, and Malaysia with 14, 10, and 5 titles, respectively continue to be the three teams with the most titles in the championship.
For India, this has been the best performance. The last time the country was closest to victory was in 1979 when they qualified for the semi-finals