Swimmers lead the way for India with 10 medals on day three
There was no stopping the Indian juggernaut in the 12th South Asian Games with the country’s swimmers, wrestlers and weightlifters continuing their demolition of competition to fetch a bulk of the gold medals and complete a second successive day of supremacy here.
India stood heads and shoulders above competition to top the medals tally with a count of 42, which included 27 gold, 12 silver and 3 bronze medals. The second spot continued to be held by Sri Lanka with a total of 37 medals (8 gold, 17 silver, 12 bronze).
The bulk of the medals on Sunday came through the swimmers, who scooped 10 in all -- including 4 gold , 5 silver and 1 bronze. The wrestlers added 4 gold and a silver, while the weightlifters snared 3 gold medals.
The swimmers, who had fetched 3 gold, 5 silver and 3 bronze medals on Saturday, once again created a splash with Sandeep Sejwal picking his second gold of the Games.
As many as five Games record were created out of the seven events on Sunday with the Indians accounting for three of them, including Sejwal’s. However, India suffered a reverse as well with ace swimmer Veerdhawal Khade losing the men’s 50m freestyle golf to promising Sri Lankan teenager Matthew Abeysinghe, who grabbed his third gold of the Games, the most by any swimmer so far.
Abeysinghe won in a Games Record time of of 23:33 to emerge as the fastest swimmer of Games, eclipsing Khade’s 2010 Dhaka edition mark of 23.75 secs. Khade also bettered his own Dhaka mark with an effort of 23.54 secs but had to be content with the silver.
On the other hand, Sejwal, who won a gold in 200m breaststroke on Saturday, added another yellow metal in 100m breastroke in a new Games Record time of 1:03.14 bettering his own mark of 1:05.01 which he had set in 2010.
Another Indian, Puneet Rana took the silver in 1:03.80 while Kiran Jasinghe of Sri Lanka got the bronze. In men’s 1500m freestyle, Kerala swimmer Sajan Prakash won his first international gold in 15:55.30 ahead of compatriot Saurabh Sangvekar who took the silver in 16:13.2. Mohd. Mahfizur Rahman of Bangladesh was third in 17:12.0.
In women’s 400m individual medley, India also finished one-two with Sayani Ghosh winning the gold in 05:14.51 while Shraddha Sudhir bagged the silver in 05:23.32. J Silva of Sri Lanka was third in 05:44.20. M Arvind gave India the fourth gold by winning the men’s 200m backstroke event.
In women’s 200m backstroke, Manna Patel took a silver in 2 minutes and 22.06 seconds behind Kimiko Raheem of Sri Lanka who won the gold in Games Record time of 2:18.09.The lone bronze winner for India was Chahat Arora in women’s 100m breastroke.
Wrestlers meanwhile continued to annihilate competition. On Sunday, Amit Dhankar (70kg), Mamta (53kg), Manju Kumari (58kg) and Pradeep (61kg) picked up the gold medals in their respective events. The lone silver for Indian in wrestling came through Gopal Yadav (86kg) who lost to Mohd Imam of Pakistan in the final.