Swapna Barman became the first Indian heptathlete to win an Asian Games gold while Arpinder Singh ended country’s 48-year long wait for triple jump victory. Dutee Chand blazed the track for her second silver as track-and-field remained India’s happy hunting ground at the 18th Asian Games in Jakarta.
The surprise story of the day was table tennis, wherein old warhorse Sharath Kamal and Manika Batra broke new grounds, giving India a first ever mixed doubles medal at the Asiad – a bronze.
As a result of these path-breaking performances, the country remained on course to better its previous edition’s haul and tallied 54 medals – 11 gold, 20 silver and 23 bronze.
Swapna Barman, who has six toes in both her feet, battled sever tooth ache during her event and competed with a tape on her right cheek. Still, she produced her career-best performance by logging 6026 aggregate points from the seven events.
A dehydrated Arpinder Singh jumped 16.77m in his third attempt to win the men’s triple jump gold.
India’s last Asian Games gold medal in men’s triple jump had come in 1970 from Mohinder Singh Gill.
Dutee added a silver to her kitty by finishing second in the women’s 200m after finishing second in the women’s 100m dash a few days back. She crossed the finishing line in 23.20 seconds, behind Bahrain’s Edidiong Odiong who clinched the gold in 22.96. The bronze went to China’s Wei Yongli (23.27).
India made its first Asian Games final in 20 years, outlasting three-time champions China 1-0.
Gurjit Kaur’s strike from a penalty corner in the 52nd minute was the difference between the two sides in a match that lacked the quality of a high-profile semi-final. Nonetheless, India did just about enough to seal their first appearance in the Asian Games final since the 1998 Bangkok Games.
India’s Vikas Krishan (75kg) overcame a bleeding left eye to be assured of an unprecedented third consecutive Asian Games medal, while Amit Panghal (49kg) produced a power-packed performance in his quarter-final bout to guarantee himself a podium finish.
However, it was curtains for world silver medallist Sarjubala Devi (51kg) after she lost her quarter-final bout 0-5 to China’s Chang Yuan, a former youth worth champion.
Achanta Sharath Kamal and Manika Batra added another feather to the cap of Indian table tennis when they bagged the bronze medal in the Asian Games mixed doubles category. This was India’s second medal from the Games. The men’s team had won the bronze on Tuesday to give India their first table tennis medal in Asian Games history
In their best ever show at the Games, the squash players were assured of two more medals after the men’s and women’s teams advanced to the semifinals.
The men’s defeated Thailand, while the women sailed past China, both winning by by an identical 3-0 margin. The squash players had claimed three bronze medals in the singles competition and with two medals assured in team events, they have exceeded their 2014 performance in terms of number of medals won.
Already out of reckoning for the medals, the Indian men’s handball team ended its campaign on a positive note, defeating Indonesia in a group 3 main round match.
In cycling, India’s Esow Alban loses his round of 16 race in the men’s pursuit to Korea’s IM Chaebin by 0.443 seconds. Esow made a tactical blunder by deciding to race into an early lead. He led the way for about two laps before the Korean made his move late into the race.
In judo, and sepaktakraw India were out of medal contention. After delivering a surprise silver and bronze on Tuesday, the kurash contingent endured a disappointing day.
In soft tennis, Rohit Dhiman and Aadhya Tiwari lose 0-5 to Chinese Taipei’s Yu Kaiwen and Cheng Chuling. Namita Seth and Aniket Patel beat Mongolia’s Damdin Altankhuyag and Anudari Munguntsetseg 5-0.
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