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Field day for shooters as India continues dominance in SAG

India pocketed five gold out of the six on offer on Wednesday besides adding three silver and one bronze to continue their dominance with 34 medals at the midway stage in the 11th South Asian Games here.

Dhaka: India pocketed five gold out of the
six on offer on Wednesday besides adding three silver and one bronze
to continue their dominance with 34 medals at the midway stage
in the 11th South Asian Games here.

India now have 34 medals (20 gold, six silver and eight
bronze) after the sixth day of 12-day sporting extravaganza
featuring eight nations of the region.

Pakistan are at a distant second with 21 medals (six
gold, 11 silver, four bronze) while Bangladesh are catching up
with 21 medals (four gold, five silver, 12 bronze).

With medal events only in shooting today, Indians made
hay at the National Shooting Complex range at Gulshan here.

The gold medals came through Imran Hasan Khan (10m air
rifle), Kuheli Ganguli (50m rifle prone) and Sonia Rai (25m

India also won two team gold medals through the women`s
25m pistol comprising Sonia, Sushma Rana and Divya Singh, and
women`s 50m rifle prone trio of Kuheli, Ruby Garg and Hema
Khatri Chetri.

The Indian shooters made a clean sweep in the women`s 50m
rifle prone individual and 25m pistol events taking all the
three pole positions.

Sonia shot 576 for the gold medal, while Divya Singh
(563) finished second in women`s 25m pistol.

Just a point adrift, Sushma Rana had to settle for
bronze as the Indian 25m pistol trio clinched top three spots.
The combined score of 1701 ensured the trio a team gold.
The Lankan trio of Abeymanna, Wejerathne and Pabawathi
finished way behind with a total score of 1645 for the silver.

In the women`s 50m rifle prone individual, veteran Indian
Kuheli shot an impressive 589 for the gold medal while Rubi
was two points behind for the sliver. K G D Pradeepika (582)
of Sri Lanka took the bronze.

The trio of Kuheli, Rubi and Hema logged 1753 points en
route to the team gold in the women`s 50m rifle prone.

Sri Lankan trio of Pradeepika, RPDNPW Kumari and HKRP
Ramani (1739) took silver, while Bangladesh`s Sarmin Shilpa,
Sabrina Sultana and Tripti Datta (1723) won the bronze.

Earlier, Army shooter Imran hogged the limelight with a
score of 697.3 to win gold in the men`s 10m air rifle.

Bangladesh duo of Asif Hossain Khan (694.4) and Shovon
Chowhdury (690.3) took the silver and bronze respectively.

But in the men`s 10m air rifle team event, the Indian
trio of Khan, Satyender Singh and Dhirender Singh Jamwal
finished behind the Bangladeshi side to settle for silver.

The Indians scored 1764, while Bangladesh trio of Asif
Hossain Khan, Abdulla Hel Baki and Shovon took the gold with
an accumulative score of 1775.

Indian shuttlers ensured five gold and five silver as
they made it all Indian finals in men`s and women`s singles,
men`s and women`s doubles and mixed doubles categories.

Having already bagged the men`s and women`s team gold
earlier, Indians are set to make a clean sweep tomorrow.
In the men`s singles semifinals, top seed Chetan Anand
made a short work of Sri Lankan No 2 Dinuka Karunaratne 21-15,
21-5 at the Wooden Floor Gymnasium courts.

In the men`s singles summit clash, Chetan will take on
second seed compatriot R M V Gurusaidutt who beat Pakistani
Ahsan Qamar 21-15, 21-11.

Top seed Sayali Gokhale dumped Palwasha Bashir (Pakistan)
21-8, 21-3 in the women`s singles semifinals. Sayali face
second seed Trupti who thrashed Thilini Jayasinghe of Sri
Lanka 21-10, 21-18 in another last-four women`s singles.

Top seed in men`s doubles, Rupesh Kumar and Sanave Thomas
face Chetan and V Diju for the gold medal tomorrow.

Rupesh and Sanave beat Rizwan Azam and Kashif Sulehri of
Pakistan 21-14, 21-13, while Chetan and Diju thrashed the
Lankan duo of Rajitha Dahanayaka and Hasitha Chanaka Manani
Hewa 21-12, 21-11.

In the women`s doubles, top seeds Aparna Balan and Shruti
Kurien beat Achini Ratnasiri and Upuli Samanthika 21-7, 21-8
while second seeds P C Thulasi and Ashwini Ponnappa beat Renu
C Hettiarachchige and Nadeesha Gayanthi 21-8, 21-13.

In mixed doubles final tomorrow, top pair of Ashwini
Ponnappa and V Diju face second seeds Aparna Balan and Thomas.
In hockey, India thrashed arch rivals Pakistan 5-1 to
reach the final with drag flicker V Raghunath scoring a
hat-trick converting three penalty corners in 14th, 19th and
57th minutes at Moulana Bhashani Stadium artificial turf.

Dharamvir Singh struck twice -- in the first and second
minutes. Pakistan reduced the margin through Wasif Siddique.

There was reverse fortune for Indian handball side who
lost to their Pakistani counterparts 31-34. India, however,
entered semifinals by finishing second in Group A.

India take on Group B winners Bangladesh while Group A
toppers Pakistan face Nepal in last four matches tomorrow.

Indian men`s and women`s kabaddi teams, the defending
champions, ensured two medals by reaching finals.

The Indians knocked down hosts Bangladesh 34-11 to face
arch-rivals Pakistan for the gold medal match tomorrow.

In the women`s section, India will take on hosts
Bangladesh for gold medal tomorrow. India and Bangladesh
finished first and second after their league matches.

In volleyball also, defending champions India ensured a
medal by reaching the final with a 25-21, 25-12, 25-14 win
over Maldives at Mirpur. They face Pakistan in the final.

Hoopsters also ensured a medal for India as they beat
Bangladesh 96-54. India will play Afghanistan in final.

In squash, India cruised past Sri Lanka 3-0 to remain on
course for the final. Gaurav Nandrajog came back from one set
down to beat Navin Samarsinghe 9-11, 11-8, 11-8, 13-11. Vikas
Jangra beat Binura Jayasuriya 11-5, 11-3, 11-2 whle Ravi Dixit
thrashed Gihan Suwaris 11-8, 11-2, 11-3.


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