Contrasting wins for Karnataka, Punjab

Published : Dec 22, 2001 00:00 IST


IT was just the right kind of platform for the Punjab girls to perform and make their presence felt. With the crowd firmly behind them, the girls went from strength to strength and finally towered over the rest by claiming the gold in the kho-kho competition of the National Games at Patiala.

Defending champion Karnataka, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh have called the shots in this sport but, for a change, Punjab rose to the occasion.

In the men's section, it was another Karnataka-Maharashtra final with the former just about managing to hold on to the title it had won at Imphal. However, Karnataka's 17-16 triumph had a controversial finish. At the stroke of the final whistle, with the teams locked 16-16, Karnataka's K. N. Vinod tapped Maharashtra's Ajay Dandekar 'out'. Even as the Karnataka team celebrated its repeat triumph over its arch-rival, Maharashtra protested vehemently. It even gave a written protest to the jury saying that Dandekar was declared out after the stipulated nine minutes had ended. The protest was later rejected and the decisive point stood reinforced in Karnataka's favour. The protest put into the shade some fine performances by R. Tulsidas and M. N. Vardaraj for Karnataka. Similarly, Tushar Chitrav and Rajesh Pathare kept Maharashtra in the match.

In the women's section Punjab, which had scored over Uttar Pradesh, Kerala and Karnataka in the league phase and Madhya Pradesh in the semifinal, carried on the good work and was never in a spot of bother while crossing the final hurdle. Harbans Kaur, Palwinder Kaur and Paramjeet Kaur were among those who carried Punjab to the pinnacle. Maharashtra, which had defeated Karnataka in the semifinal to avenge the narrow loss it suffered in the 1999 final at Imphal, was well served by Bhavna Padvekar, Vurshali Takale, Rakhi Joshi and Yasmine Shaikh. If Maharashtra returned after losing both finals for the second time in succession, Madhya Pradesh men and women fell just short of making the medal-bracket. Andhra Pradesh claimed the bronze in the men's section while it was a similar reward for the dethroned champion Karnataka in the women's section.

The results:

Men: Final: Karnataka bt Maharashtra 17-6; For third place: Andhra Pradesh bt Madhya Pradesh 13-12; Semifinals: Maharashtra bt Madhya Pradesh 19-9; Karnataka bt Andhra Pradesh 18-13.

Group 'A': Bengal bt Kerala 13-12; Maharashtra bt Andhra Pradesh 17-13; Andhra Pradesh bt Kerala 13-10; Maharashtra bt Punjab 13-12; Bengal bt Punjab 15-14; Maharashtra bt Kerala 13-9; Andhra Pradesh bt Bengal 13-12; Kerala bt Punjab 15-11; Andhra Pradesh bt Punjab 12-10; Maharashtra bt Bengal 13-12.

Group 'B': Karnataka bt Tamil Nadu 14-9; Madhya Pradesh bt Gujarat 20-14; Tamil Nadu bt Gujarat 15-13; Karnataka bt Madhya Pradesh 22-12; Karnataka bt Gujarat 15-12; Madhya Pradesh bt Tamil Nadu 12-11.

Women: Final: Punjab bt Maharashtra 12-8; For third place: Karnataka bt Madhya Pradesh 8-7; Semifinals : Punjab bt Madhya Pradesh 12-9; Maharashtra bt Karnataka 12-10.

Group 'A': Punjab bt Uttar Pradesh 13-4; Karnataka bt Bengal 12-11; Karnataka bt Uttar Pradesh 11-6; Punjab bt Kerala 16-6; Bengal bt Kerala 9-8; Punjab bt Karnataka 8-7; Bengal bt Uttar Pradesh 15-10; Karnataka bt Kerala 18-13; Punjab bt Bengal 7-6; Kerala bt Uttar Pradesh 9-8.

Group 'B': Maharashtra bt Delhi 13-5; Madhya Pradesh bt Andhra Pradesh 10-8; Maharashtra bt Madhya Pradesh 9-8; Andhra Pradesh bt Delhi 16-9; Maharashtra bt Andhra Pradesh 11-10; Madhya Pradesh bt Andhra Pradesh 11-10.

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