After 25 years, India finally had a singles tennis gold medalist after Sumit Nagal defeated Denis Istomin at the Tokyo Olympics.
D. Istomin Olympic Games Tokyo 2020
On Saturday, India was ecstatic when Sumit Nagal advanced past the first round of tennis competition at the Tokyo Olympics 2021 by defeating Denis Istomin of Uzbekistan in three sets (6-4, 6-7 (6), 6-4).
Sumit Nagal’s Victory makes him the first Indian Player to win an Olympic Singles gold medal since Leander Paes in 1996.
Sumit Nagal, a player ranked outside of the top 150 on the ATP circuit, had a respectable 2021 season leading up to Tokyo, where he went 18-17 in matches played for points.
Sumit Nagal’s first Olympic match went just as well as he could have hoped, with the Indian beating the taller Uzbek, 6’2″, with the help of his powerful forehand.
The 23-year-old, who wasn’t in top form heading into the Games, had a chance to break serve in the sixth game of the opening set. But when Istomin was serving, the Indian took advantage and kept the set alive.
Sumit Nagal jumped off to a 2-0 lead in the second set thanks to an early break, and he raced to a 4-1 lead. However, perhaps nerves got the best of him when he was serving for the match at 5-3, and he double-faulted.
Skilled Istomin Forced a Deciding Game by taking the Tiebreaker.
The deciding break in the deciding set came from Sumit Nagal while the set was on serve.
The 34-year-old quickly took charge of the match’s latter stages, guiding his team to an 8-6 victory in the second set’s tiebreaker. Nonetheless, Sumit Nagal came back strong in the deciding set.
At 9-all, the Uzbek was clearly shocked when Sumit Nagal broke his serve in the ninth game. The Indian eventually won after nearly three hours, serving out the match with little difficulty.
Daniil Medvedev, ranked second in the world, advanced over his first-round match against Alexander Bublik on Saturday and will now face No. 1 seed Sumit Nagal.
Even though Daniil Medvedev is the clear favourite to win against Sumit Nagal, the Indian may put everything he has into representing his country in a match of this magnitude.