Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty, the Indian shuttling stalwarts who assured India its first men’s doubles medal at the BWF World Championships on Friday, ended their campaign after a three game thriller in the semifinals in Tokyo on Saturday, settling for bronze.
Having won a gold at the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham earlier this month, Satwik-Chirag made their historic entry into the last fours of the event with a win over World No. 2 Japanese pair and defending champions Takuro Hoki and Yugo Kobayashi in the quarterfinals, assuring the country’s second doubles medal at the Worlds after Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Ponnappa secured the first all the way back in 2011 in women’s doubles.
The semifinal encounter against Aaron Chia and Soh Wooi Yik was a thrilling showdown for the World No. 7 pair. Despite taking the first game, Satwik and Chirag were edged out by the Malaysian duo as they took the helm of the match through the next two games and won by a 22-20 18-21 16-21 margin in 77 minutes.
TotalEnergies BWF World Championships 2022
MD – Semi final
20 21 21 🇲🇾Wooi Yik SOH🏅
22 18 16 🇮🇳Satwiksairaj RANKIREDDY
🕗 in 78 minutes
— BWFScore (@BWFScore) August 27, 2022
“It is unfortunate to always be unlucky all the time in crucial stages. There were too many string outs and lucky net chords in crucial times, which is really irritating,” said Satwik following the defeat, “At 17-15, Chirag’s racquet string was out, so it is always unlucky situations for us. Maybe we should do lot more puja and pray to God. It was a tough loss.”
“We are a bit disappointed. It was quite close and could have gone either way but I guess a few points here and there and luck was also not on our side. All credit to them, they played a solid game,” Chirag added.
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