GUANGZHOU, Nov 24 (PTI): Tarundeep Rai clinched a historic silver medal in archery while star boxer Vijender Singh and three of his colleagues stormed into the men’s boxing finals as India slipped to the tenth position on the 12th day of competitions in the 16th Asian Games here today.
Tarundeep had his moment of glory as he became the first Indian archer to win a medal in the men’s individual event on a day which saw as many as six bronze medals coming India’s way. But the failure to win a gold resulted in India going down by two rungs to tenth position on the medals table.
The women’s men and women’s squash teams, woman boxers Mary Kom, Kavita Goyat and pugilists Suranjoy Singh and Paramjeet Samota accounted for the bronze medals. With the addition of seven more medals, India’s medal haul went up to seven gold, 13 silver and 26 bronze. India had finished tenth on the medal rostrum in the last edition of the Games in Doha.
China maintained their supremacy atop the medals table with a stunning haul of 172-92-86 while South Korea (71-59-81) and Japan (36-66-74) were in the second and third position respectively.
It was a mixed day for Indian boxers with four of them managing to storm into the finals and two of them losing their semi-final bouts. But Mary Kom’s defeat in women’s semi-final came as a huge disappointment for the Indian contingent.
Vijender outpunched Iran’s Mohammad Sattapour to cruise into the finals and keep himself on course for a gold medal in the 75 kg category. Manpreet Singh also moved into the finals in 91 kg.
The 18-year-old Vikas outwitted Uzbekistan’s Hurshid Tojibaev 7-0 to make the finals where he would be facing China’s Qing Hu. Dinesh also had little trouble in dispatching Nepal’s Deepak Maharjan 7-1 and set up a final clash against Uzbekistan’s Elshod Rasulov.
However, Commonwealth Games gold medallists Suranjoy Singh (51kg) and Paramjeet Samota (+91kg) had to be content with bronze medals after losing in the semifinals in contrasting fashion.
While Suranjoy lost 5-6 to China’s Chang Yong in a thriller-of-a-contest, Samota was all at sea against Zhilei Zhang before the referee stopped the contest midway through the third round and awarded the bout to the home favourite.
Indian woman boxer Kavita Goyat (75kg) lost to China’s Jinzi Li in the semfinals and settled for a bronze medal. Kavita went down 1-5 to Li at the Foshan Gymnasium.
Tarundeep turned out to be the hero in archery with his silver medal feat. In a closely fought contest, the Indian archer lost to the Woojin Kim of South Korea 28-28, 27-28, 29-28, 27-28, 27-29.
Rai gave a vital lead to his opponent in the last set as he shot an eight pointer in his first attempt. And even though the Indian made amends in the next two attempts by scoring nine points each but those did not prove enough to halt the Korean. The other Indian in the fray, Rahul Banerjee ended his campaign on a disappointing note as he could not even make it to the quarterfinals after he surrendered without posing much challenge to Taipei’s Chun Chia Sung.
In squash, the women’s team settled for a bronze medal in the Asian Games after slumping to a 0-2 defeat at the hands of favourites Malaysia in the semifinals here today.