ESPN India's top 10 stories of 2018: Unreal Kashmir, Manika's sleight of backhand and more

Commonwealth Games, Asian Games, the football and hockey World Cups -- we have seen some brilliant sporting action across 2018. Here's ESPN India's top content of the year.

1: Unreal Kashmir

A fledgling football club breaks barriers and unites people to bring hope in a region battered by years of violence.

2: India's rugby revolution

A sport once played exclusively by the British rulers is giving women in India, especially those from the most disadvantaged communities, a sense of empowerment and self-belief.

3: The sleight of backhand that won India gold

Manika Batra's win over three-time Olympic medallist Tianwei Feng set India on the path to the table tennis women's team gold at the Commonwealth Games. And it was a mysterious, difficult sleight of hand that helped her pull off that crucial win.

4: Tattoos and toe ring for parents lift Ragala to CWG gold

Venkat Rahul Ragala took up weightlifting because his father couldn't fulfill his own dream in the sport. He paid tribute to his father's efforts to support him and his mother, who passed away two years ago, after winning gold at Gold Coast.

5: Tired limbs, exploding hearts, historic gold

Armymen Sawarn Singh and Dattu Bhokanal found energy in the unknown crevices of their body to lead India to only its second gold medal in rowing at the Asian Games.

6: How Amit Panghal took down a monster

Uzbekistan's Hasanboy Dusmatov is the meanest boxer of the lot, and the stuff nightmares are made of. Thankfully for India, Amit Panghal doesn't believe in monsters.

7: Wonder woman Swapna Barman overcomes pain barrier

Born with six toes, pain has been Swapna Barman's constant companion ever since she could walk. It makes her victory in the heptathlon that much more impressive.

8: Legend of the luge

Shiva Keshavan heads for his sixth Winter Olympics, and towards the finishing line of a career whose greatness is measured in his grit.

9: Beyond tiki-taka: Story of Chennai City's remarkable turnaround

After last season's 'great escape', Chennai are leading the I-League table and scoring for fun. This is the story behind their improbable success.

10: Praggnanandhaa: The boy who could be king

Already a grandmaster at the age of 12, it is no wonder the chess world is doing its best to get R Praggnanandhaa's name right.