On the penultimate day of the Asian Games, women’s hockey team bagged silver in a fought final against Japan. India also won a silver and couple of bronze medals in sailing and another in men’s team squash on Friday.
India stands eight in the overall medals tally with 65 medals – 13 gold, 23 silver, and 29 bronze medals. India has equaled their best ever Asian Games haul set in 2010.
The Indian women’s team who went into the finals as favorites to win gold were upset by Japan with a 2-1 scoreline. The silver meant that India lost out on direct qualification to Tokyo 2020. India was trying to win their first Asiad gold since 1982, but Neha Goyal’s equalizer in the 25th minute was not enough. Japan scored off a penalty corner in the 43rd minute to take the lead and the gold away from India.
India’s defense that did not allow for a single goal to be scored against them in all of the group stages and semi-finals could not stop the Japanese from scoring. India will now take the long route for the Olympic qualifications which will be the next thing on Coach Sjoerd Marijne’s list.
India clinched three medals courtesy of Varsha Gautham and Sweta Shervegar clinching silver in the 49er FX Women’s event and Harshita Tomar claiming bronze in the Open Laser 4.7 and Varun Thakkar Ashok and Chengappa Ganapathy Kelapanda winning bronze in the men’s 49er event.
Varsha Gautam, 21 and Sweta, 26 scored a total of 40 in 15 races to finish second in the 49er FX event. 16-year-old Harshita accumulated a total of 62 in 12 races to clinch bronze at the Indonesia National Sailing Centre.
Teenaged Harshita spoke after the win, she said: “It is a great feeling to win a medal for the country. I can’t explain it. It has been a great learning experience for me”.
Indian men’s squash team won bronze in the team event at the Games. The defending champions lost the semi-finals to Hong Kong 0-2 to settle for bronze. Saurav Ghosal, Indian numero uno was not fully fit and lost his match 0-3, whereas Harinder Pal Sandhu lost 1-3.
The women’s team comprising of Joshna Chinappa, Dipika Pallikal Karthik and Sunayna Kuruvilla advanced to the semi-finals after defeating Malaysia in the semi-finals.
India’s medal tally: 13 gold, 23 silver, 29 bronze, 65 total.