Asian Games Day 13: Women’s hockey team win silver; three medals in sailing for India

Asian Games Day 13: Women's hockey team win silver; three medals in sailing for India

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.

Hockey

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.

Sailing

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”.

Squash

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.

More medals follow for India on day 7 and 8 in Indonesia

More medals follow for India on day 7 and 8 in Indonesia

More medals were added to India’s medal tally on day 7 and 8 of the 18th Asian Games in Indonesia. Here are the medal-winning highlights from the two days:

Tajinderpal Singh Toor wins India’s first gold in the athletics on Friday at the Asian Games. The 23-year old threw the iron ball 20.75 meters to break the Games record and clinch gold. The Moga native said his only aim was to cross the 21-meter mark in the finals. “I had just one aim in mind. I wanted to clear 21-meter. I did not think of gold. But I am happy with this. I was trying hard to break the national record for the last 2-3 years and it happened today, that too with a meet record”, he said after the finals.

The burly Punjabi who trains in Dharamsala credited his victory to this family saying, “This medal is my biggest achievement because a lot of sacrifices have been made. For the last two years, my father (Karam Singh) has been battling cancer. My family though never let me get distracted. They allowed me to chase my dream. A lot of sacrifices have been made by my family and friends, and all of it has been repaid today”.

Squash players also added to India’s medal tally. Dipika Pallikal Karthik, Joshna Chinappa, and Saurav Ghosal had to settle for bronze in the individual events after they lost their respective semi-finals. Dipika lost to defending champion Nicol David of Malaysia by 7-11, 9-11, 6-11. Dipika had previously won bronze in the same event at the Incheon Games in 2014.

Joshna Chinappa also lost to a Malaysian. She was defeated by 19-year-old Sivasangari Subramaniam by 0-12, 6-11, 11-9, 7-11.

Saurav Ghosal, India’s number one men’s player lost his semi-final match against Chung Ming Au of Hong Kong China after suffering a leg injury. Ghosal seemed to be winning after winning the first two games, but the injury set him back and he lost the next three games and the match.

On Day 8, Equestrian Fouaad Mirza secured India’s first individual medal in the event since 1982 Asian Games. Finishing behind Japan’s Oiwa Yoshiaki, he bagged silver in the Eventing competition. Fouaad topped the dressage and cross-country qualifiers. In the finals, he scored 26.40 to seal the silver medal in the three-day event.

Fouaad was also part of the Indian team that also won silver in the Eventing team event. Fouaad, Jitender Singh, Akash Malik and Rakesh Kumar came in second place with a combined score of 121.30.

On the second day of athletics events, India bagged more medals courtesy of Hima Das, Muhammed Anas, and Dutee Chand.

Hima Das and Muhammed Anas won silver in the 400m women’s and men’s finals respectively. Hima broke the national record with a timing of 50.79 seconds. The 18-year-old from Assam took up sprinting in 2016 after the insistence of her PE teacher. A month ago, she became the first Indian track athlete to win a gold medal at the Under-20 World Athletics Championships.

Anas who topped the qualifications for the 400-meter finals finished second in the finals affected by a steady drizzle. He did admit that the drizzle tightened his muscles and turned his body tight.

“My aim was to get a medal, the colour of the medal doesn’t matter. I am happy I got silver. There were some issues at the start of the start of the season. I wanted to train with my personal coach PV Jayakumar, but they asked me to attend the Indian camp. Anyway, I am happy I could end the season in a better way,” Anas said after the race.

Dutee Chand missed out on gold in the 100-meter finals by just 0.2 seconds. What a run it was by the Indian sprinter from start to finish. In a photo-finish race, the controversy hit athlete was all smiles after her stupendous running effort.

Heartbreak for Lakshmanan Govindan who came in third in the 10,000-metre finals but was later disqualified. He was disqualified because his foot touched the inside of the track once in the 24-lap race. The AFI has appealed for a repeal of the disqualification as he Lakshmanan did not gain an advantage over any of the other athletes. The army man came in third but the fourth-placed runner was a lap or so behind Lakshmanan which might come into consideration when the referees evaluate the appeal. Until then, Lakshmanan has to play the wait and watch the game.

Other Matches

The Indian men’s hockey team beat Korea 5-3 in their Pool A encounter. This is the first time that the team has conceded any goals in the competition.

The women’s hockey team also continued their dominant performance in a close encounter with Korea. With the score tied at 1-1 in the last quarter, India scored three goals in three minutes to win the game. Gurjit Kaur struck twice in the fourth quarter.

Saina Nehwal and PV Sindhu also assured India of medals by reaching the semi-finals of the single’s badminton events.

The Indian women’s and men’s compound archery teams are through to the finals.

India’s medal tally: Gold 7, Silver 10, Bronze 19, Total 36

Shardul Vihaan, Ankita Raina bag medals on Day 5 at Asian Games

Shardul Vihaan, Ankita Raina bag medals on Day 5 at Asian Games

India bagged two medals on Day 5 of the Asian Games in Indonesia. Fifteen-year-old Shardul Vihan clinched silver in the men’s double trap shooting event becoming the youngest Indian shooter to win a medal at this year’s games. Ankita Raina emulated Sania Mirza, winning bronze in the single’s tennis category. She is the second Indian woman to win a Tennis medal at the Asian Games.

Shardul Vihaan was the youngest competitor when he stepped into the shooting range for the finals. The eventual winner, Hyunwoo Shin of Korea is 34 while the other five shooters were of ages 42, 38, 33 and 27. Shardul came one point behind the Korean, 73 to Shin’s 74. In the 80-shot finale, the Meerut lad held the lead for the first 36 shots. A PUB-G addict, the teenager played them with ease in the final rounds to hold on to his silver medal place.

Shardul’s pre-shot routine caught the eyes of many. Before every shot, he uses an empty shell to gauge the height to position his gun. Vikram Singh Chopra, the coach of India’s junior shotgun national team was quoted by Scroll.in, “In double trap, the first target is thrown at three meters and the second target is thrown at 3-and-half meters. The machine throws it at different angles, for example, machine No 7 throws it five degrees left, machine no 9 is five degrees right. So when you are changing your station, the angle changes. He was using an empty cartridge to take a tentative idea of his gun placement to reduce the moment down to break the target. It is a technical parameter taught to the kids in a double trap”.

Shardul took up the sport competitively at twelve-years-old in 2015. In this time, he has won the junior and senior events at the National Shooting Championship. With the double trap, not an Olympic sport anymore, the Asian medallist will now have to switch from double trap to a single trap shotgun.

Ankita Raina, the 25-year-old lost her semi-final match against world no.34 Zhang Shuai. In the 131-minute encounter, Ankita lost 4-6, 6-7 (6) to the Chinese.

After the match, Ankita said, “I came here to win gold. Hopefully, I can do that in the mixed doubles (with Bopanna). It was a tough match and I could have won. She is obviously an experienced player but I thought I could beat her.”

Ankita’s opponent was all praise for her after the match. “She played very well today. It was a tough match. If she keeps on playing this, she can get into the top-100 and maybe even top-50,” Zhang said.

Rohan Bopanna and Divij Sharan entered the men’s doubles final of the Asian Games. They will play their finals encounter on Friday against the pair of Bublik / Yevseyev. Prajnesh Gunneswaran when he outplayed Kwon Soonwoo of South Korea 6-7 (2), 6-4, 7-6 (8) in a marathon quarter-final lasting almost four hours.

The men’s kabaddi team suffered a shock defeat against Iran in the semi-finals. This is the first time since the sport’s inclusion in the Asian Games in 1990, that the Indian team has not entered the finals. Iran beat India 27-18 to enter the finals. The coach Ram Mehar Singh hit out at the captain Ajay Thakur for his “overconfidence”. “We lost the match due to the captain’s overconfidence, injury played a part and super tackle,” said the coach to PTI.

In squash men’s singles, Saurav Ghosal will take on Indian Harinder Pal Sandhu in the quarter-final assuring India another medal at the games. India’s numero uno players Dipika Pallikal and Joshna Chinappa also reached the quarter-finals of the women’s singles event.

INDIA’S MEDAL TALLY: Gold 5, Silver 4, Bronze12, Total 21