Tokyo Paralympics: The XVI Paralympics Games kicked off in Tokyo. India is represented by its largest contingent to date, with 54 para-athletes. Yesterday, Javelin thrower Tek Chand became India’s flag bearer at the last minute in the opening ceremony. High Jumper Mariyappan Thangavelu who was supposed to lead. But he had to quarantine, after coming in contact with Covid positive individual. India kicked off their campaign with para paddlers Sonalben Patel and Bhavina Patel in women’s singles Class 3 and Class 4.
Indian paddler Sonalben Manubhai Patel kicked off her campaign in Women’s singles class 3 Group D opener. She was up against world no 4 Qian Li of China. Patel fought hard but lost closely. Li won 3-2: 9-11, 11-3, 15-17,11-7,11-4. The match lasted for 36 minutes at the Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium. Patel will face Mi Gyu Lee of South Korea next in her second Group D encounter tomorrow.
Para paddler Bhavinaben Hasmukhbhai Patel also kicked off her campaign in women’s singles class 4 Group A opener. She faced 2-time Olympic champion, Zhou Ying of China, in her first encounter. Patel lost out 3-0: 11-3,11-9,11-3. Patel will clash against Mrgan Shackleton of Britain, in her second Group A match tomorrow at the Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium.