Shooters claim gold, two silvers, India fourth in medal standings
Shooters kept the tricolour flying with Jitu Rai bringing a gold and Gurpal Singh and Gagan Narang garnering silvers to propel India to the fourth place in the leaderboard on day-five of competition at the Commonwealth Games here Monday.
But apart from the exploits in the range, majority of Indian participants had a luckless day, even though para-discuss thrower Jai Deep missed a bronze narrowly, and most pugilists remained in medal contention.
The disappointment came from the table tennis, squash and badminton courts, as Indian players belied hopes and failed to add their names to the medal bracket.
With a haul of seven gold, 11 silvers and seven bronze pieces, India snatched back the fourth spot from Canada in the medal contest. Australia (28-21-27), England (25-21-21) and hosts Scotland (12-8-12) continued to be the frontrunners.
After a goldless Sunday, Rai and Singh opened India's medal charge with a delightful one-two in the men's 50-metre pistol event before seasoned marksman Narang ensured a second highest podium finish in 50-metre rifle prone at the Barry Buddon Shooting Centre.
Armyman and amateur flute player Rai won the gold in style setting a Finals Games Record (FGR) carding 194.1 points. Earlier, he broke the Commonwealth Games record in the qualifiers where he topped, amassing 562 points - a sizeable 15 points ahead of Englishman Kristian Callaghan in second place.
In the finals, the 26-year-old Lucknow youth took off brilliantly with 29.7 points in the first round and kept his lead till the end. With 187.2 points, Gurpal, who hails from Bathinda, came in second.
Narang then brought India their 12th medal from the discipline after finishing behind Australian veteran Warren Potent. Narang -- who has bagged eight CWG gold medals -- had to settle for his first silver, and ninth medal overall in the Games.
The 52-year-old Potent won the yellow metal in style by setting the Finals Games Record (FGR) with a score of 204.3 points.
The other Indian in fray, Joydeep Karmakar missed the final cut-off by a whisker as he finished ninth with 617 points, 1.3 behind the eighth and last qualifier for the finals.
More laurels are expected from the range Tuesday as Harpreet Singh topped the qualification Stage 1 of the men's 25-metre rapid fire pistol event. Olympic silver medallist Vijay Kumar was fourth in the qualifiers of the same event.
Continuing to warm up the ranges, veteran Mansher Singh topped the men's trap qualification while Manavjit Sandhu finished third. The qualification will continue Tuesday and will be followed by the semi-finals, bronze medal playoff and the gold medal contest.
But shooters Meena Kumari and Lajja Gauswami disappointed in women's 50-metre rifle prone finals,taking the sixth and the 11th spots. Shreyasi Singh and Seema Tomar failed to qualify for the women's trap semi-finals.
In the boxing ring, Sumit Sangwan registered a comfortable 3-0 win over Mohammed Hakimu Fumu of Tanzania to reach the quarterfinals of the men's 81kg category.
The celebrated Vijender Singh in men's 75 kg and Devendro Laishram in men's 75 kg also proceeded to the quarter-finals.
However, it was the end of the road for Shiva Thapa who lost his men's 56 kg round of 16 bout 0-3 to Northern Ireland's Michael Conlam.
In track and field, India's Chandrodaya Narayan Singh qualified for the men's hammer throw finals, finishing fifth in his Group A qualification throwing a best of 67.95 metres.
However, the other hammer thrower Kamalpreet Singh could not move beyond the Group B qualification stage.
Para-discus thrower Jai Deep came close to a podium finish, with a fourth place finish in the men's F44/42 final. Para-swimmer Sharath Gayakwad qualified for the men's 200-metre individual medley SM8 final
In squash singles, Saurav Ghosal and Anaka Alankamony bit the dust, bringing to an end their individual campaigns. While Ghosal lost his men's singles bronze medal match 1-3 to England's Peter Barker, Anaka went down in the women's singles plate final with a similar scoreline to Deon Saffery of Wales.
India's men table tennis players suffered a disappointing finish in the team bronze medal playoff, losing to Nigeria 1-3. India had won the bronze in the same category four years ago in New Delhi.
The shuttlers also failed to replicate the performance of the 2010 Commonwealth Games losing the mixed team bronze medal playoff 2-3 to Singapore.
India, who won silver four years ago at home, could not come out with their best show, losing all three doubles matches, including the final crucial women's doubles, to go down to the city-state.
(Posted on 29-07-2014)