Darshan, Unnati emerge victoriousJune 8, 2022
For Maharashtra’s Darshan Pujari, a gold medal by defeating Rithvik Sanjeevi was special. It was for the second time that the two were up against each other and, since Sanjeevi had won the previous clash, Pujari made sure to take a sweet revenge. In the final of boys’ badminton event, Pujari got the better of Sanjeevi (21-15, 22-20).
A trainee of Pullela Gopichand Badminton Academy, Pujari had his ups and downs in the title clash. However, he stood solid to win the gold.
“I started training when I was eight years old, but took serious steps to improve my game at the age of 11. I am inspired by Indian badminton team, latest Thomas Cup title win. I also see myself representing India and wish to bring a gold medal in the Olympics. As far as the next step is concerned, I will be playing in the All-Indian Juniors in Goa,” said Pujari.
Haryana’s rising badminton star
Haryana’s rising badminton star Unnati Hooda came back from the brink to win the girls’ singles title. Fourteen-year-old Unnati, the youngest Indian girl to make it to the Uber Cup team, looked down and out against former World Junior No. 1 Tasnim Mir after losing the opening game 9-21 and trailing 11-18 in the second. She didn’t give up and began frustrating Tasnim with her patient play. Tasnim tried to force the pace and earn quick points, allowing Unnati to come back into the contest. She saved four match points, including a lucky net chord, which helped her win the second game. The decider was then a lopsided affair, with Tasnim unable to recover her rhythm. Unnati won (9-21, 23-21, 21-12) in 47 enthralling minutes.