None of the shuttlers of the Indian contingent managed to win a medal at the event.

The French Open 2021 recently came to a conclusion after a brilliant week’s worth of action. The world’s best badminton players took part in the competition being held in Paris, France. There was a strong Indian representation as well, but the challenge facing them was tough to say the least. Unfortunately, none of the Indian shuttlers came away with a win in their respective brackets. However, it goes without saying that the players performed really well and there were several positives to take away. 

Here are the top five Indian performers from the French Open 2021:

5. Sameer Verma

Sameer Verma was one of the best Indian performers in the men’s singles action at the French Open 2021. While heavyweight Kidambi Srikanth failed to leave a mark, Verma was impressive. He got off to a great start by defeating South Korean Lee Dong-keun 21-14, 21-12 in Round 1.

The 27-year-old carried his good form into Round 2 against Shesar Hiren Rhustavito of Indonesia. Sameer won the first game 21-16 and looked set to win his second match, until an injury started affecting his game. He lost the second game 21-12 and then retired from the contest, unable to continue.

4. Satwiksairaj Rankireddy/Ashwini Ponappa

Rankireddy and Ponappa put up a strong showing at the 2021 French Open (Courtesy: ESPN)

Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Ashwini Ponappa are seasoned doubles players and fans were hoping they would get to the latter stages of the mixed doubles bracket. 

They secured an impressive victory by defeating Mathias Thyrri and Mai Surrow 21-19, 21-15 in Round 1. However, the duo came up against second seeds Praveen Jordan and Melati Daeva Oktavianti of Indonesia in the next round. The Indonesian opponents narrowly emerged winners by 15-21, 21-17, 21-19. Rankireddy and Ponappa pushed the stronger opponents to the brink, nonetheless. 

3. Satwiksairaj Rankireddy/Chirag Shetty

Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty are one of India’s best pairings in recent times. The Indian pair were fifth seeds coming into the tournament and were one of the strongest pairings overall. All three of their matches went into three games, but the duo managed to reach the quarter-finals. 

They lost their clash against Aaron Chia and Soh Wooi Yik of Malaysia. The fourth seeds were also a strong pair coming into the tournament and barely managed to defeat the Indian pair by a 18-21,21-18, 21-17 scoreline.

2. Lakshya Sen

Sen reached the men’s singles quarter-finals at the French Open 2021 (Courtesy:TV9)

Lakshya Sen delivered a brilliant performance in the men’s singles category. He reached the quarter-finals of the tournament and gave a great account of himself. The 20-year-old youngster is showing a lot of promise and fans are taking note of his performances. Sen defeated Nhat Nguyen and Loh Kean Yew in straight games on his way to the quarter-finals.

The Indian faced South Korea’s Heo Kwang-hee in the quarterfinals and bowed out after losing the contest. His opponent emerged victorious by a 21-17, 21-15 scoreline. This campaign was a sign of what to expect from this promising shuttler.

1. P.V. Sindhu

P.V. Sindhu was the strongest contender amongst the Indian contingent. The third seed was one of the favourites to win the women’s singles bracket and reached the semi-finals. The world No.7 shuttler was in good form early on and secured easy wins over Julie Dawall Jakobsen, Line Christophersen and Busanan Ongbamrungphan on her way to the semi-finals.

Sindhu came up against Sayaka Takahashi in the crucial tie for a place in the final. However, the Japanese was in scintillating form and won the contest by a 18-21, 21-16, 21-12 score. Regardless of the result, Sindhu was the best performing Indian at the tournament.

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