Manasi Joshi and Sukant Kadam win gold medals at Spanish Para-Badminton International
A round-up of the Indian performances at the Spanish Para-Badminton International this week
What’s the story?
Manasi Girishchandra Joshi and Sukant Kadam made it double delight for Indian parabadminton by winning the gold medal in their respective categories at the VII Spanish Para-Badminton International 2018 held in Alcudia, Mallorca in Spain on Sunday. While Joshi reigned supreme in the WS SL3 category, Kadam tasted glory in MS SL4.
In case you didn’t know
Manasi Joshi was a part of the Indian squad that brought 10 medals from the prestigious Para-Badminton World Championships in November last year. Joshi won the bronze in WS SL3 while Arjuna awardee Parul Parmar won two gold medals.
The heart of the matter
Joshi, who lost her left leg in an accident in 2011, has been one of the best para shuttlers India has ever produced. Despite the setback, the former software engineer never gave up and learnt to walk all over again.
She soon resumed playing badminton, which she had been pursuing since the age of 10 and started participating in corporate tournaments before playing at the national level. She also has a silver medal from the 2015 Para Badminton World Championships to her credit.
The currently fifth ranked Joshi won all her matches at this week’s Spanish International, which presented her the title. She prevailed over Darunee Henpraiwan 12-21, 21-17, 21-19 and then followed it up with a 21-15, 21-17 win over Asami Yamada and a 23-21, 21-18 win over Katarzyna Ziebek.
Sukant Kadam, who too is ranked fifth in MS SL4, was the top seed in his category at this tournament. He was very much in command in the knock-out stages, winning all his matches in straight games.
He beat Tim Haller 21-16, 21-14 in the quarter-finals, Rickard Nilsson 22-20, 21-11 in the semi-finals and second seeded Kyung Hwan Shin 21-16, 21-16 in the final.
Kadam is a trainee at the Nikhil Kanitkar Badminton Academy and won bronze medals at the Spanish International, the Irish International and the Thailand International last year.
The next tournament on the calendar for the para shuttlers is the Dubai Para Badminton International to be held from April 10-15. The Indian contingent is expected to take part in it.
Both Joshi and Kadam are an inspiration to all the para shuttlers in the country. There’s so much to learn from their zeal, passion towards their game and their positive attitude. We hope to see them bring more laurels for India.