Updated: Sun, 15 May 2022 03:57 PM IST
Nonthaburi (Thailand) | Jagran Sports Desk: Chak De, India! India on Sunday rewrote history and defeated 14-time winners Indonesia 3-0 to win the finals of the Thomas Cup 2022 at the Impact Arena in Thailand's Bangkok.
With this, India became the sixth nation to crowned Thomas Cup champions.
India had started the round 1 on a choppy note after Anthony Ginting won the game 1 against Lakshya Sen by 21-8. However, the 20-year-old made a stunning comeback to win game 2 and 3 by 21-17 and 21-16 respectively to give India a 1-0 lead.
The round 2, a double's match, was played between India's Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty vs Indonesia's Mohammad Ahsan and Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo. Like the round 1, the Indonesian team dominated the game 1 to win it by 18-21.
However, Chirag and Satwik - India's best doubles pair - didn't give up hopes and made a strong return by winning the game 2 and 3 by 23-21 and 21-19 respectively as India got a lead of 2-0.
In round 3, Kidambi Srikanth didn't give a chance to Asian games gold medallist Jonatan Christie to help Indonesia make a comeback after he defeated him in two straight games by 21-15 and 23-21 to make it 3-0 for India.
Congratulating the Indian team, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said the whole country is "elated" with their win.
"The Indian badminton team has scripted history," he tweeted. "Congratulations to our accomplished team and best wishes to them for their future endeavours. This win will motivate so many upcoming sportspersons."
Union Sports Minister Anurag Thakur also hailed the performance and announced a cash award of Rs 1 crore for the players "in relaxation of rules to acknowledge this unparalleled feat."
"HISTORY CREATED! Congratulations to the Indian men’s badminton team’s for winning the Thomas Cup! This extraordinary feat, with succesive victories over Malaysia, Denmark and Indonesia, calls for matching honour by the nation," he tweeted.
No Indian team has previously reached the final of the Thomas and Uber Cup in its 70-plus year history. Indian men reached the Thomas Cup semi-finals in 1952, 1955 and 1979 while the women's team made it to the Uber Cup top-four in 2014 and 2016.
The Indian team - featuring Lakshya Sen, Kidambi Srikanth, HS Prannoy, doubles pair Satwiksairaj Rankireddy-Chirag Shetty and others - finished second in Group C behind Chinese Taipei to qualify for the knockout stage, where they came up on top against strong Malaysian and Danish teams in the quarter-finals and semifinals, respectively.