India’s splendid run at the ongoing 2019 South Asian Games gathered more momentum on Wednesday with their paddlers securing top spots in the table tennis doubles events in Kathmandu, Nepal.
The Indian dominance was so evident that three finals in the doubles segment ended up being an all-Indian affair as the likes of Harmeet Desai, Anthony Amalraj and Madhurika Patkar brought their best to the table to return with the top prize.
In the men’s doubles final, Desai and Amalraj had to rally from a game down to beat compatriots Sanil Shetty and Sudhanshu Grover for the gold medal.
Desai and Amalraj won the match 8-11, 11-7, 11-7, 11-5, 8-11, 12-10. Meanwhile, Santoo Shrestha and Vinesh Khaniya, representing the hosts Nepal, won the bronze after their win over the Sri Lankan pair of Chambers Ginige and Rashmika Krishnanand.
Topsy-turvy table tennis final at South Asian Games
In the women’s doubles, the Madhurika Patkar and Sreeja Akula combine took the top spot on the podium following a topsy-turvy win over fellow countrywomen Sutirtha Mukherjee and Ayhika Mukherjee.
Having lost the opening game 2-11, Patkar and Akula did well to find their way back into the tie before losing the fourth to game up a nervy fifth game. But it was the Mukherjee duo that couldn’t manage the pressure as their competitors took the gold medal with the scoreline reading 2-11, 11-8, 11-8, 11-6, 5-11, 11-5.
Sutirtha, however, redeemed herself later in the day as she teamed up with Desai to win the mixed doubles title following an 11-6, 9-11, 11-6, 11-6, 11-8 win over Amalraj and Ayhika.
Taekwondo delight at South Asian Games
Following their impressive show in Poomsae, the Indian taekwondo team won a handful of medals in the Olympic discipline on Wednesday.
Turning up in the men’s -74kg category, India’s Jarnel Singh won the gold with a comfortable 41-26 win over Jabran Khan of Pakistan. Meanwhile, Sourav (-63kg) and Gaganjot Gill (-62kg) had to be content with silver medals following their loss in the final bout. Chaitanya Vijaya Inamdar took home a bronze following his loss in the semifinal of the +87kg category.
In the women’s section, Latika Bhandari and Rodali Baruwa were India’s top performers with their gold medal-winning performances on Wednesday. In the -53kg category, Bhandari beat Pakistan’s Aneila Ayesha Afsar 40-10 for the yellow metal while Baruwa got the better of Nisha Rawal of Nepal 32-9.
Meanwhile, the Indian men’s kho-kho team too added to India’s gold rush with a fine 16-9 win over Bangladesh in the final.
Wednesday’s performance has taken the Indian medal tally at the 13th South Asian Games to 29 gold, 15 silver and 29 bronze medals. They continue to occupy the second spot with Nepal leading the charts with 34 gold, 23 silver and 13 bronze.