Wed, 31 May 2023

New Delhi [India], January 26 (ANI): Star India paddler Manika Batra jumped two places in the latest International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) global rankings to achieve a career-best ranking of 35th in the women's singles category.

The boost follows Manika Batra's outstanding performance at the WTT Contender Doha last week when she advanced to the semifinals. The world No. 17 Chen Szu-Yu of Chinese Taipei was defeated in the opening match by the Indian table tennis (TT) star during the competition.

In the following two rounds, Batra defeated the Koreans Joo Cheonhui and Choi Hyojoo before losing to the Chinese player Zhang Rui in the semifinals.

Manika Batra won a historic medal for India at the Asian Cup in November. In order to earn the bronze medal, she trounced world No. 6 Hina Hayata of Japan and world No. 7 Chen Xingtong of China.

Manika became just the second Indian and the first female player in table tennis to win a medal at a continental competition. Chetan Baboor earned a bronze medal in 2000 and a silver in 1997.

The silver medalist Sun Yingsha topped the most recent table tennis rankings, ahead of the Tokyo 2020 women's singles champion Chen Meng.

In February of last year, the 27-year-old Manika Batra climbed into the top 50 of the TT global rankings and spent the rest of the year in the 30s and 40s.

Manika Batra had a challenging season despite her Asian Cup triumph from the previous year. She only advanced to the semifinals of one competition and the quarterfinals of two others, including the 2022 Commonwealth Games.

However, Manika Batra and partner Sathiyan Gnanasekaran had a successful season in the mixed doubles, reaching the finals of two competitions (WTT Contender Doha and WTT Contender Nova Gorica).

In the most recent ITTF mixed doubles rankings, the team of Manika and Sathiyan fell one position to sixth.

Meanwhile, national champion Sharath Kamal moved up one spot to 46th, while G Sathiyan remained India's top-ranked men's singles table tennis player at world No 40, falling one spot.(ANI)

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