Rajat Chauhan strikes twin gold in archery, SSCB continue domination
Rajat Chauhan stole the thunder from Abhishek Verma by bagging two gold besides a silver as India’s Asian Games gold-medal winning members of the men’s compound archery team squared off for two different outfits on the eighth day of competitions in the 35th National Games on Sunday.
In the overall standings at the halfway stage of the Games, the Services Sports Control Board (SSCB) continued to rule the roost in the medals tally. The two-time defending champions (69) trail Maharashtra (92) in the total medal count but are perched on top on the basis of a higher number of gold medals.
SSCB have so far accumulated 42 gold, 13 silver and 14 bronze medals. Maharashtra, on the other hand, have 27 gold, 38 silver and 27 bronze medals. Haryana held the third position with 27 gold, 18 silver and 7 bronze for a total of 52 medals.
After the end of shooting and swimming competitions yesterday, focus was on archery, which is being conducted in Kochi with Rajat (Rajasthan) and Abhishek (Delhi) being the cynosure of all eyes. Rajat was the more impressive one, leading Rajasthan to the mixed team gold besides the men’s team silver. In the mixed event, Rajasthan beat Punjab 146-145 before losing to the same state in a shootoff for the men’s team gold after finishing 229-229 in the regulation shots. However, Rajat took the top spot in the individual competition, beating Abhishek 145-142 to take the yellow metal.
Abhishek, who won the individual silver in the Asian Games, settled for a bronze with Sushma in the mixed team event before his silver in the individual men’s final. The individual bronze went to Telangana’s Sanam Isaih Ranjender, who beat statemate Deepa Kranthi Kumar 143-140 in the play-off. However, there was heartbreak for the third member of Asiad team, Sandeep Kumar (SSCB), who finished without a medal after his men’s team lost 229-231 to Telangana in the bronze medal play-off. The women’s team gold was nabbed by Arunachal Pradesh after a 226-223 triumph over Punjab in the final with Andhra Pradesh finishing third following a 224-218 win over Manipur.
The individual top honours were taken by Andhra Pradesh’s Purva Shende, who got the better of Arunachal Pradesh’s Sorang Yumi 1441-141. Punjab’s Trisha Dev beat Jharkhand’s Soy Manjudha in a shootoff to claim the bronze after scores were tied at 138. On the tennis court, the action wound up with Tamil Nadu’s Ram Kumar Ramaverma clinching the men’s singles gold by beating statemate Sri Ram Balaji 6-2, 6-4. The women’s title went to Ankita Raina who beat Maharashtra’s Prarthana Thombare 7-5 6-3.