Bollywood personalities including Akshay Kumar, Taapsee Pannu, Abhishek Bachchan and Rajkummar Rao on Sunday lauded table tennis player Bhavina Patel for winning the silver medal at the Tokyo Paralympics. Patel became only the second Indian woman to win a medal at the Paralympics after she signed off with a historic silver following a 0-3 loss to world number one Chinese paddler Ying Zhou in the women’s singles table tennis class 4 final in Tokyo.
Kumar took to Twitter and said he marvels at the 34-year-old wheelchair player’s “talent and perseverance”. “Thank you for making history with your medal, #BhavinaPatel. It amazes me to see your talent and perseverance. #Paralympics #Tokyo2020.” “It’s a silver! And that too a maiden one in TT! Congratulations Bhavinaben!” tweeted Pannu. Bachchan said Patel’s win has brought glory to the nation “once again.” “Take a bow, Bhavina Patel, for winning silver with a stellar performance at #TokyoParalympics 2021!” he added.
Patel, who was diagnosed with polio when she was 12 months old, had defeated world no 3 Miao Zhang of China 7-11 11-7 11-4 9-11 11-8 in the semifinal on Saturday. Rao took to Instagram and wrote, “India… India! Congratulations Bhavina Patel.” Actors Vicky Kaushal, Pooja Bhatt and Ishaan Khatter also shared the news on their social media handles. With this medal, the Indian team has opened its account at the Games. Deepa Malik, who is the current president of Paralympic Committee of India (PCI), was the first Indian woman to win a medal in the Paralympic Games when she had claimed a silver in shotput at Rio five years back.