File photo of Manika Batra©TUSEN
Star runner Manika Batra’s dream run in the Asian Cup Table Tennis Tournament ended when she went down on Saturday in a fight against fourth seed Mima Ito of Japan. Unseeded Manika, who became the first Indian to reach the semi-finals of the continental tournament, lost 8-11 11-7 7-11 6-11 11-8 7-11 (2-4) to the No. world Japanese paddler. World No. 44 Manika had previously defeated World No. 23 Chen Szu-Yu of Chinese Taipei 4–3 in the quarter-finals at Hua Mak Indoor Stadium.
Manika has already secured the best finish by an Indian in the Asian Cup’s 39-year history after Achanta Sharath Kamal and G Sathiyan finished sixth in 2015 and 2019 respectively.
The ace Indian female paddler had previously shocked world No. 7 Chen Xingtong of China in a round of 16 match on Thursday.
The $200,000 event features the top 16 players in the continent’s men’s and women’s singles based on world rankings and qualifications.
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