Shooters shine, India’s medal tally up to 10 at Asiad

JAKARTA,21st Aug: India took their Asian Games 2018 medal tally to 10 as five medals were earned on Tuesday. Teenage shooter Saurabh Chaudhary clinched India's third gold medal in Jakarta early on Tuesday. Saurabh, 16, clinched the top prize in men's 10m air pistol event with Games record of 240.7 ahead of Japan's Tomoyuki Matsuda (239.7). Saurabh's compatriot Abhishek Verma won bronze in the same event with a score of 219.3. Saurabh and Abhishek's success was followed up by shooter Sanjeev Rajput, who bagged silver in Men's 50m Rifle 3 Positions to take India's tally to eight.

India also clinched a medal in a game that many would have been unfamiliar of. The Indian team settled for bronze medal in Sepaktakraw Men's Team Regu and the last medal of the day came from wrestler Divya Kakran, who bagged bronze in women's 68kg freestyle category.

WUSHU: Naorem Roshibina Devi, Santosh Kumar, Surya Bhanu Pratap Singh and Narender Grewal assured themselves of a medal each after advancing to the semi-finals of their respective categories in the wushu competition on Tuesday. This is the best ever performance by India in wushu at the Asiad. Naorem defeated Mubashra of Pakistan 2-0 in the quarter-finals of the women's sanda 60 kilogram category. This was the first medal for India in wushu at this year's Asian Games.

Naorem will take on Cai Yingying of China in the semi-finals. The loser will have to be content with a bronze medal. Later, Santosh edged out Phitak Paokrathok of Thailand 2-1 in the last eight stage of the men's sanda 56kg division. Santosh will take on Bui Truong Giang of China in the semi-finals. Surya defeated Jean Claude Saclag of Philippines 2-0 in the quarter-finals of the men's sanda 60kg category. He will fight Iran's Erfan Ahangarian for a place in the final.

In the men's sanda 65kg quarter-finals, Grewal beat Akmal Rakhimov of Uzbekistan 2-0. He will meet Foroud Zafari of Iran in the semi-finals. But there was disappointment in store for Indians in the men's sanda 70kg event as Pardeep Kumar lost 1-2 to Indonesia's Puja Riyaya. Pardeep was leading 1-0 till the late stages of the second round when Puja earned a point to draw level. Puja went on to take the lead in the third round which ultimately proved to be decisive.

KABADDI: The Indian men's and women's kabaddi teams both qualified for the semifinals of the Asian Games, after their emphatic wins against their respective opponents on Tuesday. The men's team, who are seven-time gold-medallists, bounced back from the shock 23-24 defeat against South Korea to beat Thailand 49-30 in their fourth and final Group A match. They had beaten Bangladesh 50-21 and Sri Lanka 44-28 before losing to South Korea.

India is certain to finish among the top two teams in the group and qualify for the semifinals. But the group winner will be known later as South Korea is yet to complete its preliminary engagements. In the women's competition, India played two matches and emerged victorious in both to top Group A with an all-win record and qualify for the semifinals.

In the first match of the day, the Indian women's team defeated Sri Lanka 38-12 before trouncing Indonesia 54- 22 in their final group match. The Indians had beaten Japan 43-12 and Thailand 33-23 in their earlier group matches. India will play against the second-placed team in Group B in the semifinals. The semifinals will be held on August 23 while the final will be played the next day.

HOCKEY: Four Indian players scored a hat-trick each as the women's hockey team mauled lowly Kazakhstan 21-0 to notch up its second consecutive win in the Asian Games on Tuesday. Goals rained thick and fast in the Pool B match at the GBK Hockey Field with as many as 10 Indians out of 18, who took the field, entering their names in the scoresheet. The Indians scored almost at will against the hapless Kazakhstan team but the scoreline missed the all-time Asian Games record of 22-0 by a goal. The Indian women’s team had beaten Hong Kong 22-0 in the 1982 Asiad.

Navneet Kaur (11th, 12th, 16th, 48th, 48th) top-scored with five goals while drag-flicker Gurjit Kaur, who had also scored a hat-trick in India’s 8-0 thrashing of Indonesia in their opening match, had four strikes (8th, 36th, 44th and 51st). Lalremsiami found the target in the ninth, 19th and 29th minutes while Vandana Katariya (28th, 37th and 52nd) was the fourth player to score a hat-trick in the lop-sided match. India, who had won a bronze in the 2014 Asian Games, are currently ranked ninth while Kazakhstan are 34th in the latest FIH chart. India is the highest ranked team in the competition.

Gurjit scored the first goal for India in the eighth minute as she sent a low and powerful shot to the Kazakhstan goalkeper’s left. A minute later, India were 2-0 up as as Lalremsiami connected a pass from Lilima Minz before Navneet struck her first goal two minutes later. India were 4-0 up in the 11th minute, with Navneet finishing off once again. India got their sixth goal of the game in the 18th minute off a penalty corner conversion by Lalremsiami. Just a minute before the end of the second period, India were 8-0 up with Vandana scoring with a superb shot. Lalremsiami added another one to complete her hat-trick at the stroke of half time to make the scoreline 9-0. India added another 12 goals in the next two 15-minute periods to overwhelm their opponents.

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