Former junior world No. 1 Lakshya Sen on Friday had to settle for the silver medal after he went down in straight games in the men’s singles badminton final at the Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires. The 17-year-old suffered a 15-21, 19-21 defeat against China’s Shifeng Li in 42 minutes. The fourth seed shuttler showed a solid fighting spirit in the second game as he managed to save four match points to inch closer towards his Chinese opponent. But Li managed to held his nerve together and push for the win without losing a game.
In the first game, Shifeng took an early lead and raced to 14-5 in no time. Sen made a fine recovery to narrow down the gap to 13-16 but he could not sustain it and Shifeng went ahead 18-13 and then made it 20-14 to have six game points. Though Sen saved one game point, the Chinese won the next one to pocket the first game in 17 minutes.
The second game was a closer fight than the first but the Chinese was leading all the time. Shifeng was ahead 8-7 initially but the gap widened to 12-7 before Sen made it 11-14. The three-point gap remained for some time before the Chinese made it 18-14 and then 19-14.
I realise how fortunate I am to receive so much support from a young age from Prakash Sir, Vimal Sir, Prakash Padukone Academy, @BAI_Media @Media_SAI @OGQ_India and so many others. I will work hard and continue to do well. Thanks for all the good wishes pic.twitter.com/cov1SdvqIk
— Lakshya Sen (@lakshya_sen) 13 October 2018
Sen’s silver medal win takes India’s total tally at the Youth Olympics to seven medals this year. He became the second Indian shuttler to win a silver at the event in 8 years. It was HS Prannoy who had achieved the same feat back in 2010.
Earlier, Young shooting sensation Manu Bhaker became the second Indian after judoka Tababi Devi to win two medals at the Youth Olympic Games (YOG) after winning a silver while the men’s hockey team moved to the semi-finals with a 4-2 win over Poland here on Friday.
(With inputs from PTI)