Rutaparna-Swetaparna become first Indian sister pair to win medal in international challenge badminton event
Siblings Rutaparna and Swetaparna became the first Indian sister pair to contest a women's doubles BWF international challenge badminton final and won silver at Saint-Denis Réunion Open International Challenge 2022.
Odisha's badminton sisters pair of Rutaparna Panda and Swetaparna Panda added a new achievement to their nascent CVs as doubles partners by winning silver at the Saint-Denis Réunion Open International Challenge 2022, which concluded on Sunday. With this victory, they have become the first Indian sister siblings to contest a final of a BWF international challenge badminton tournament.
Putting up an intense fight against top seeds Annabella Jaeger and Leona Michalski of Germany, Rutaparna and Swetaparna claimed the first set 13-21 but were given a tough fight by Annabella and Michalski in the remaining two. The German top-seeded pair moved past Rutaparna and Swetaparna Panda 13-21, 21-18, 21-18 in the title clash that lasted for an hour and 12 minutes to claim gold.
Rutaparna, who would partner with Tanisha Crasto earlier, has only recently started pairing with Swetaparna, her younger sister and this was their first BWF final together as a pair and they created history by clinching silver at the event as a sister pair.
En route to the final, the World No. 570 pair of Rutaparna and Swetaparna managed to stun third seeds Lorna Bodha and Kobita Dookhee of Mauritius in the semi-finals on Saturday, defeating the World No. 224 pair in just 21 minutes, 21-8, 21-5.
In women's doubles badminton, apart from Rutaparna and Swetaparna, the Stoeva sisters from Bulgaria and the Aimsaard sisters from Thailand are quite the raging force on the international tour - a legacy that Rutaparna and Swetaparna surely want to start themselves and the silver medal win from Saint-Denis is only a marker of better days to come for the siblings' pair.