Indian ace Tennis player, Ankita Raina claimed bronze at the ongoing Asian Games 2018 after losing 4-6, 6-7 (6) to world number 34 Zhang Shuai in the semifinals on Thursday. The 25-year-old became just the 2nd Indian women after Saina Mirza to secure Asiad glory for India. Mirza had won a silver in 2006 and a bronze in 2010.
Ankita Raina, who was far below in terms of ranking against her Chinese opponent got the best of her in the early stages, however, Zhang managed to take lead after a netted backhand by the Indian in the first set.
The second set was also equally matched but again the netted backhands gave Zhang another match point and then the win.
Everybody was longing for the same incredible comeback that Ankita made in the quarterfinals against the Hong Kong opponent Eudice Chong but it never came.
In the quarters’ match, Ankita was 4-1 down in the first set but she held her nerve to beat Eudice in straight sets. The first set lasted 54 minutes while Ankita comfortably won the second set in just 27 minutes.
Raina is riding high, as 2018 seems to her best year on the circuit In March, she won the $25,000 ITF tournament in Gwalior — her first singles title in over three years. Her previous win was at the Pune ITF in December 2014. In 2016, Raina had clinched gold at the at the 2016 South Asian Games in the women’s singles event.
Meanwhile, in men’s singles event, India suffered upsets as Ramkumar Ramanathan, the second seed, was knocked out in the round of 16 by Uzbekistan’s Karimov Jurabek. Ramkumar won the first set 6-3 but lost the next two 4-6 and 3-6.
Now, as the 5th day of the Asian Games is currently underway, India stands at 9th position with 4 golds, 3 silvers and 9 bronze.