Wrestlers, shooters, archers take India’s gold count to 20 (Night Lead)

Friday, October 8, 2010

NEW DELHI - Women wrestlers and archers excelled Friday winning three golds between them as shooters continued to add to their kitty, taking India’s Commonwealth Games gold tally to 20 on the fifth day of competitions here.

Anita won the gold in the freestyle 67kg category defeating Canadian M. Buydens 4-1 and Alka Tomar won in the 59kg event. She defeated Tonya Verbeek, also of Canada, 3-2.

The women archers gave the country its maiden Commonwealth Games gold in the sport, which returned to the Games after 28 years. However, the fancied men’s side disappointed by getting only a bronze in recurve team event.

The shooters won three golds.

There was disappointment in tennis as top seed Leander Pares and Mahesh Bhupathi crashed out of the men’s doubles event.

However Somedev Devvarman and Sania Mirza entered the finals of the singles event.

The first gold Friday came from the women’s recurve team in archery. Dola Banerjee, Bombayala Devi and Deepika Kumari, beat England in the final at the Yamuna Sports Complex for the top honour, their first in the Commonwealth Games.

Later, India’s men archers won the bronze in the recurve team event. The team, comprising Jayanta Talukdar, Rahul Banerjee and Tarundeep Rai defeated England in the bronze play-off at the Yamuna Sports Complex.

Continuing their blazing form, Indian shooters struck three more golds with Gagan Narang and Imran Hasan Khan winning the men’s 50-metre rifle three-position event, army man Vijay Kumar claiming top honours in the men’s 25-metre rapid fire pistol event and Omkar Singh triumphing in the men’s

10-metre air pistol event.

Another army man, Gurpreet Singh, won the bronze in the 25-metre rapid fire pistol at the Karni Singh Shooting Range. Vijay and Gurpreet had won the gold medal in the pairs event Thursday.

Indian shooters, who set up Games records in both the events, have so far collected 10 gold medals in the competition.

Gagan, a world No.3, shot a total of 1,167 (prone 397, standing 385, kneeling 385) while Imran had a total of 1158 (prone 395, standing 381, kneeling 382) enabling India to win the gold with a cumulative score of 2325.

The earlier Games record of 2,300 was held by Canadian pair Michael Dion and Wayne Sorensen at the Victoria Games in 1994.

Omkar, a Navy man, equaled the Games record in the qualifying round by shooting 584. In the final he shot 97.8 for a total of 681.8. Omkar equalled the qualifying Games record of 584 set by India’s Samresh Jung in the 2006 Melbourne Games.

Indian shooters Manavjit Singh Sandhu and Mansher Singh won the silver in the men’s trap pairs event.

Wrestler Babita Kumari won the silver in the women’s freestyle 51kg category. She lost to Nigerian Ifeoma Christiana Nwoye 4-7. Her elder sister had won a gold Thursday.

Indian gymnast Ashish Kumar won silver in the men’s vault event at the Commonwealth Games here Friday.

Devvarman made sure of a medal in tennis singles defeating Matt Ebden of Australia in semifinal.

Sania moved into the singles final defeating Olivia Rogowska of Australia 1-6, 6-4, 6-4.

India fell short of their target of 14 goals against Trinidad and Tobago and this could impact their medal chances in the women’s hockey event, team coach Sandeep Somesh said.

“At the start of the game today, we had a certain target and that was 14 goals, but we only managed seven and this could hurt us,” he said after India’s 7-0 win against the minnows from the Caribbeans.

New Zealand became the first team to qualify for the semifinals of the women’s hockey event, beating England 4-1 and South Africa fought back to draw 1-1 with Australia in a league match.

Filed under: Commonwealth Games, Hockey, Tennis

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