2018 Asian Para Games bronze medallist Krishna Nagar from India bagged two gold medals as the 2nd Fazza-Dubai Para Badminton International Championships concluded at the Shabab Al Ahli Club here on Sunday.
A day after upsetting the World no. 1 Jack Shepherd in the men’s singles SS6 semi-finals, Nagar pulled off the second upset in as many days when he defeated England’s world no. 2 Krysten Coombs 20-22, 25-23, 21-12 in the most exciting final of the day, that went over an hour.
“Yes, this is the biggest win of my career,” an elated Nagar told Asian Paralympic Committee (APC), before he went on to make it two-for-two, winning the mixed doubles title along with Raja Magotra.
“This has been also the best tournament for me. This is big the motivation in this important year and going ahead in the road to Tokyo 2020,” said the left-handed player, who started playing the sport only in 2018 and won his first medal at the Thailand International in July last year.
Among others, World no. 1 Pramod Bhagat and Parul Parmer took the gold in SL3 men’s and women’s singles.
However, Asian Para Games winner Tarun went down to French world no. 1 Lucas Mazur in straight games 13-21, 17-21 in men’s singles SL4 final. Overall, Team India had a good run at the event finishing with nine medals including four golds on Sunday.
But it was the badminton powerhouse China, who emerged as the best team, winning 19 medals including six gold medals in the second largest-ever field in the history of Para Badminton. As many as 270 players from 37 nations took part at the event.
Badminton World Federation (BWF) Para Badminton vice president Paul Kurzo said that he was surprised to see such big number of entries at the event. “I am happy to see how Para Badminton was growing. And with its debut in Paralympics, the sport will reach a new level. I really want to appreciate and thank the local organizing committee for conducting everything so well. The scheduling of matches was a headache with so many players here, but they pulled it off well. We always like coming to Dubai,” he said at the closing.
Asian Paralympic Committee President and Dubai Club for People of Determination Executive Director Majid Rashed thanked the BWF for giving the opportunity to host the event. “We hope to succeed together with the BWF and deliver a great championship to everyone. We hope everyone here as athletes, coaches and officials achieved a fruitful outcome of being in the United Arab Emirates. In the year of tolerance, we want to send message to everyone that sports is about peace, tolerance and getting together. Congratulations to all the winners here and good luck next time to the ones who missed out,” Mr. Rashed said.
The road to Tokyo 2020 Paralympics continues, with the next stop for the players going to be Uganda from April 22-28, 2019.