Indian compound archers bag historic gold, India in 11th spot

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September 28, 2014

Gold medal winning Men's compound archery team members Abhishek Verma, Sandeep Kumar and Rajat Chauhan celebrate after the final at the 17th Asian Games in Incheon on Saturday.

September 28, 2014

Gold medal winning Men's compound archery team members Abhishek Verma, Sandeep Kumar and Rajat Chauhan celebrate after the final at the 17th Asian Games in Incheon on Saturday.

For a country which was desperately looking for a gold, India got it from a sport where it was least expected. Rajat Chauhan, Sandeep Kumar and Abhishek Verma kept their cool under pressure as India shocked host South Korea 227-225 in the men’s compound archery team event on Saturday for only its second gold at the 17th Asian Games here.

It was India’s first-ever archery gold in the Asian Games but the compound event was making its debut at Incheon.

A little later Abhishek won the men’s individual silver while the women won the team bronze and individual bronze through Trisha Deb.

India was never in trouble in the men’s final’s four sets and surprisingly, led all the way at Gyeyand Asiad Archery Field.

It was slightly ahead 55-54 after the first set and then had leads of 113-110 and 171-169 after the next two sets with Rajat Chauhan being the most consistent of the trio with a series of tens.

Meanwhile the Koreans, a major force in recurve archery but not among the world’s elite in the compound, appeared to be under pressure competing in front of the noisy home crowd and the poor seven by one of the archers in the final set let the team down very badly.

“We’ve been seeing only bronze medals for India in the medal table, so we wanted to win the gold,” said Rajat, the World No. 9 from Rajasthan who won a World Cup silver in Turkey this year and who was fifth in the World Cup Finals in Spain a few days ago, after the rare and sensational victory. At 19, he was the youngest member of the Indian team.

Abhishek and Sandeep had been part of the Indian team which won the gold, beating Korea, at the Asian Championship in Taipei late last year and the two had won the individual silver and bronze respectively there too.

“We had two-week training at Salt Lake City in the US in August and this helped us in a big way, made us mentally stronger. It helped us handle the Asian Games well,” said Manipur’s Waribam Singh Ranjan, the team’s coach.

“We were confident of winning the gold here."

Bronze medal winning Women's compound archery team members Surekha Jyoti (c), Trisha Deb (L) and Purvasha Sudhir Shende (R) pose after the final at the 17th Asian Games in Incheon on Saturday.

Silver for Abhishek

Later Abhishek, an assistant in Income Tax office, New Delhi, lost to Iran’s Esmaeil Ebadi 141-145 in the final and won the men’s individual compound silver.

Two more medals came in the women’s compound, with India taking the team bronze after defeating Iran 224-217, and Trisha Deb picking the individual bronze after prevailing over Taipei’s Jou Huang 138-134.

That meant that India, which had a disappointing time in the recurve event where South Korea is the Olympic heavyweight winning three of the four golds in London in 2012, had a very happy outing in compound, winning a medal in all the four events held so far at Incheon.

The results (compound archery):

Finals: Men’s individual: Esmaeil Ebadi (Iri) bt Abhishek Verma (Ind) 145-141.

Team: India (Rajat Chauhan, Abhisek Verma, Sandeep Kumar) bt South Korea (Yonghee Choi, Lihong Min, Youngho Yang) 227-225.

Women’s individual: Choi Bomin (Kor) bt Seok Jihyun (Kor) 144-143. Bronze: Trisha Deb (Ind) bt Jou Huang (Tpe) 138-134.

Team: South Korea bt Taipei 229-226.

Bronze: India (Trisha Deb, Purvasha Sudhir Shende, Surekha Jyothi Vennam) bt Iran 224-217.


Courtesy: PTI

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