Archana Kamath's stunning run in the table tennis competition of the Youth Olympics ended with a loss in the semifinals here on Wednesday.
She lost 1-4 after valiantly trying to unravel the second seed from China, Yingsha Sun, in a tense encounter. Archana is still in the running for the bronze medal though, when she takes on Romania's Andreea Dragoman later in the evening, early morning in India.
The 18-year-old from Karnataka had created history in the morning, becoming the first Indian ever to enter the semifinals of the Youth Olympics. She defeated Azerbaijan's Ning Jing 4-3 to achieve this amazing feat.
Archana had her opportunity in the fourth game when she raced away to a 5-0 lead and literally toyed with Yingsha to win it 11-1. But her loss in the first three games at 3, 7 and 6 had left her a mountain to climb.
She fought valiantly in the fifth game, which proved to be the decider, but Yingsha had recovered her poise to unleash a series of winners.
Earlier, Archana had to use all her skills, energy and nerves to overcome Jing 4-3.
She pulled off a 13-11, 8-11, 6-11, 11-3, 6-11, 12-10, 11-7 win in the quarterfinals.
After taking the extended first game, Archana was hit back by Ning Jing, a Chinese origin player from Azerbaijan, who went 2-1 up to mount pressure on the Indian. But Archana was up to the task and levelled 3-3 before dropping the next.
At this junction, the 18-year-old had to muster the courage to keep her nerves calm and approach the match with composure. And she did it marvellously to first erase the deficit and in the decider, playing like a champion, she simply demolished her opponent.
(With inputs from agencies.)