The Indian badminton men's doubles pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty, on Saturday, bagged the bronze medal in the ongoing BWF World Championships. The Indians lost 22-20, 18-21, 16-21 to Malaysia's Aaron Chia and Soh Yik in the semifinals.
Satwik-Chirag started off well in what was the first-ever World Championship semifinal for an Indian men's doubles pair. They led for a major portion of the first game and looked in complete control. Though the Malaysians soon found their rhythm to take the lead for the first time in the match at 18-17, Satwik-Chirag maintained their composure to win the first game 22-20.
Aaron Chia and Soh Yik, however, maintained their new found momentum and raced to a five-point lead at 17-12 in the second game. The Indians did put up a fight back, but eventually went down 18-21 as the Malaysians forced them into a decider.
The decider started on a much closer note with neither pairs willing to give an inch. The Malaysians eventually went into the change of ends with a slender 11-10 lead. With pressure firmly on them to overcome this one-point deficit, Satwik and Chirag crumbled as errors overflowed from their racquets to eventually go down 16-21 and settle for a bronze after a hard fought contest.
This was Satwik and Chirag's sixth straight loss to Chia and Soh in as many outings. Though they had to settle for the third place on the podium, the Indians truly created history by becoming the first-ever men's doubles pair from the country to win a medal at the BWF World Championships.