Star wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt notched up India’s fourth gold medal, while Khushbir Kaur became the first woman from the country to win a medal in 20km Race Walking by clinching a silver as India shot up to ninth in overall standings on the ninth day of competitions in the 17th Asian Games in Incheon today.
Besides, tennis players accounted for three bronze medals through Yuki Bhambri (men’s singles and men’s doubles with Divij Sharan) and Sania Mirza and Prarthana Thombare (women’s doubles). M R Poovamma and Rajiv Arokia won a bronze each in men’s and women’s 400m race respectively while Manju Bala added another medal of same hue in women’s hammer throw.
It was yet another joyful day for the Indian contingent after yesterday’s rich haul of 10 medals and have now broken into the top 10 for the first time since the multidiscipline extravaganza began on September 19.
With the addition of eight more medals today, India are placed ninth in the table with a collection of four gold, five silver and 26 bronze. China continued to maintain their supremacy with a tally of 216 (1056348), followed by South Korea (424847) and Japan (344646). Medals won today aside, India can look forward to rich haul in the coming days as well with the women boxers assured of medals in all three weight categories.
The men’s doubles tennis pair of Sanam Singh and Saketh Myneni as well as mixed doubles team of Myneni and Sania also assured themselves of at least a silver by advancing to the final. Yogeshwar was star performer of the day as he better his 2006 edition bronze in style with a couple of splendid bouts.
The Olympic bronzemedallist was trailing all through in his semifinal bout before coming good in the last few seconds to enter the final. In the summit clash, Yogeshwar defeated Zalimkhan Yusupov of Tajikistan to expectedly pick the gold. Earlier, Khushbir Kaur provided the early spark by becoming the first Indian woman to win a medal in race walking in the Asian Games as she clinched a silver in 20km event.
The 21yearold from Amritsar clocked 1:33:07 to finish behind Lu Xiuzhi of China, who won the gold in 1:31:06, at the Marathon Course here. The Indian, who holds the national record of 1:31:40, was consistently third till the 18km mark before going up a position in the final two kilometres, thanks largely to the slowing down of secondplaced Chinese Nie Jingjing, who eventually finished fourth.
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