Manika Batra, world number 58 and India’s number one led India to a historic win against Singapore, a team that has not lost at the Commonwealth Games since 2002, in the finals, with a score of 3-1, thus clinching the gold.
Batra dominated her higher-ranked opponent Mengyu Yu in the final, winning 11-7, 11-6, 11-2, 11-7. Earlier in the day, she had beaten world No. 4 Tianwei Feng for the second time in a week.
Batra’s first step towards serious table tennis was in 2011, where she won a silver medal in the under-21 category of the Chile Open. She went on to represent India at the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games but had to settle for a quarterfinal finish. Batra stormed back from the loss and won three medals in the 2015 Commonwealth Table Tennis Championships. There, she claimed silver in the women’s team event (with Ankita Das and Mouma Das) as well as the women’s doubles event (with Ankita Das) and bronze in the women’s singles event.
After winning Gold medal Manika became the sensation on twitter not only for her emphatic win but also for her amazing nailart. Batra was noticed wearing nail paint of the Indian tricolour. She wore saffron nail colour followed by a white layer with Ashoka Chakra on it and a layer of green color at the end.
Many people tweeted for her outstanding achievement on the social media platform and acknowledged her for being so patriotic, while some others made an accusation of being a hyper-nationalist.
Rajyavardhan Rathore, sports minister, tweeted “Girls of the Indian Women’s #TableTennis team were on fire. Congrats to all on our historic first #CWGwin in TT women’s team. #ManikaBatra’s play during the finals was crucial to this victory. She, in a stunning performance, defeated Olympic medalist & World no. 4!’.
This is especially impressive considering that the Singaporean side has snagged every gold medal at the Commonwealth Games since the sport of table tennis was first added to their list of competitions, back in 2002
Here are some tweets:
— Ashish Kushwah 🇮🇳 (@Ashishkushwah3) April 8, 2018
Manika Batra inspired
India to a historic gold medal in the final of the women’s Table Tennis
team event at the #CommonwealthGames2018
💥Her Nail Paint is Tricolor
🇮🇳 JAI HIND
🙏Bharat Mata ki Jai pic.twitter.com/2q81QF6nVG
— GAGAN ⚡SKY⚡ (@blue21sky) April 8, 2018
— Squirrel_Of_Ram🚩 (@Squirrel_Soul) April 8, 2018