As Lakshya Sen defeated Indonesia's Anthony Sinisuka Ginting to give India a 1-0 lead in the Thomas Cup, he propelled Team India to winning the Thomas Cup for the first time in 73 years.
Speaking to Sportstar after his win, Sen said, "I wasn't worried because I was going to play better end in the last 11 points. I knew I could open up and play. I knew he (Ginting) was under pressure."The world no. 9 stunned world no. 5 Ginting 8-21, 21-17, 21-16 in a battle that lasted an hour and five minutes.
— BWF (@bwfmedia) May 15, 2022
A video of the match-winning moment has gone viral. The clip also shows Sen celebrating on the court after beating Ginting.
A devastated Indonesia -- the tournament's most successful team having previously won it 14 times -- could not keep pace with the fire brought by the Indian team.
India were already 2-0 up, with Sen's victory and then Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty defeating Mohammad Ahsan and Kevin Sukamuljo in the doubles.
The Indian team, competing in their first final of the men's team championship, sealed the title when world number 11 Kidambi Srikanth defeated Jonatan Christie 21-15, 23-21.
Congratulating them, Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted, "The Indian badminton team has scripted history! ...The entire nation is elated by India winning the Thomas Cup!"
The Indian badminton team has scripted history! The entire nation is elated by India winning the Thomas Cup! Congratulations to our accomplished team and best wishes to them for their future endeavours. This win will motivate so many upcoming sportspersons.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) May 15, 2022
The Centre has announced a cash award of Rs 1 crore to the players.
Sports Minister Anurag Thakur tweeted, "The Sports Ministry is proud to announce a cash award of Rs 1 crore for the team in relaxation of rules to acknowledge this unparalleled feat!"