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Tokyo Olympics: India's Atanu stuns Korean legend, Sindhu enters quarters

PTI/Tokyo
Filed on July 29, 2021
India's Atanu Das celebrates after beating 2012 Olympic champion Oh Jin-Hyek at the Tokyo Olympics on Thursday. (World Archery Twitter)

Atanu beat the legendary South Korean Oh Jin-Hyek in a one-arrow shoot-off

India’s men's hockey team, PV Sindhu and archer Atanu Das produced impressive displays at the Tokyo Olympics on Thursday, but boxing icon Mary Kom suffered a shock defeat.

Mary Kom lost the pre-quarterfinal fight despite winning two of the three rounds against Colombia's Ingrit Valencia.

But the 38-year-old Mary Kom has promised to keep going after her final Olympic appearance.

Before India celebrated her grit, it woke up to some fantastic news from the hockey stadium in Tokyo.

The Manpreet Singh-led team hammered defending champions Argentina 3-1 in their penultimate group match to storm into the quarterfinals.

This was after badminton star PV Sindhu set the tone for the day by advancing to the quarterfinals with a 21-15 21-13 win over Denmark's Mia Blichfeldt.

But Atanu was the biggest Indian star of the day.

The archer was a huge underdog against two-time Olympic champion Oh Jin-Hyek. But he displayed nerves of steel against his world-class rival.

Atanu beat the legendary South Korean in a one-arrow shoot-off. An individual Olympic champion from London 2012 and a team gold medallist here, Oh started the shoot-off with a 9. But Das delivered a perfect 10, hitting the bull’s-eye to seal the issue 6-5 (10-9).

He had earlier seen off a tough challenge from Chinese Taipei's Deng Yu-Cheng to win 6-4 after being locked at 4-4.

In the ring, Satish Kumar, India's first super heavyweight boxer to compete in the Olympics, entered the quarterfinals, defeating Jamaica's Ricardo Brown in his opening bout.

In the battle of the debutants, the 32-year-old Satish prevailed 4-1, a comfortable win for him despite the split verdict.

He will take on reigning world champion Bakhodir Jalolov of Uzbekistan.

India also made a fine start in the golf competition with Anirban Lahiri carding a 4-under 67 in the first round to be placed tied 8th at the Kasumigaseki Country Club.

The former Asian Tour No.1 had six birdies against two bogeys and shared the 8th spot with Paul Casey of Great Britain, Alex Noren of Sweden and Sebastian Munoz of Colombia at the end of the day.

The other Indian in the fray, Udayan Mane who made the field of 60 at a late stage, had a fine start at 2-under after eight holes. But he finished at 5-over 76 and was last on the leaderboard.

In shooting, Manu Bhaker and Rahi Sarnobat were occupying the 5th and 25th places in the women's 25m pistol qualification.

In a field of 44 shooters, Bhaker scored 292 after 30 shots on target in the precision round while Sarnobat scored 287 in the qualifications at the Asaka Shooting Range.

The second stage of the qualification -- the rapid round -- will take place on Friday. The top eight shooters in the qualification will enter the final.

Indian rowers Arjun Lal Jat and Arvind Singh ended their campaign in 11th position in the men's lightweight double sculls event -- the best result for the country in the Olympics.

Meanwhile, India's swimming campaign ended with Sajan Prakash failing to make the semifinals of the 100m butterfly event.

He finished second in his Heat but that was not enough to advance as he attained that position in the second-slowest heat with a time of 53.45s. The cut was placed at 51.74s.

On Friday, the athletics competition will take off in the Japanese capital and javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra, who is due to compete on August 4, is India's only medal hope.

The 23-year-old Chopra, currently ranked fourth in the world, is India’s best athlete. But Chopra has competed in only one top-class international event in the run-up to the Olympics due to the Covid-19 pandemic.





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