SAG: India bags gold medals in badminton and archery

The 12th South Asian Games, on Monday, witnessed India walking away with all the gold medals on offer in badminton and archery disciplines.

Indian Men's and Women's badminon team won the gold medal against Srilanka at 12th South Asian Games(SAG) in Shillong   -  M. Moorthy

The 12th South Asian Games, on Monday, witnessed India walking away with all the gold medals on offer in badminton and archery disciplines.

India steamrollered Sri Lanka 3-0 in both the men’s and women’s sections to win the badminton crown. The host was overwhelmingly dominant in archery as well as it clinched all the five titles at stake: compound team men & women, individual men and women and mixed events.

Hardly a force to reckon with in badminton, Sri Lanka went down meekly in both the categories.

K. Srikanth started cautiously against Buwanaka Goonathileka, the country’s premier player, before running away with the match 21-14, 21-14 in the men's first match.

The Sri Lankan was at his best attacking in the first game, matching the World No.9 and even employing effective jump smashes that yielded a lot of points in the beginning.

From 12-12, Srikanth had got a firm grip of Goonathileka’s game. He began to deceive the Sri Lankan frequently with drops and once his smashes, his forte, started to land, Goonathileka stood little chance.

In the second match, Prannoy Kumar outclassed Sachin Dias 21-13, 21-16, while the top doubles pair of Manu Attri and Sumeeth Reddy dispatched Goonathileka & Dias 21-12, 21-11 in the third match.

The women’s team, without doubles specialist Jwala Gutta, who preferred to sit out, wasted little time in putting it across Sri Lanka. P.V. Sindhu played the doubles with Ashwini Ponnappa.

There was, however, a minor scare for the Indians in the second tie, after Sindhu gave India a flying start. The reigning national champion Ruthvika Shivani had to save three game points at 20-17 in the first game, but returned confidently to defeat Thilini Pramodika 23-21, 21-13.

It was a memorable day for India’s archer Purvasha Sudhir Shende as she bagged three gold medals in compound women’s team, individual and mixed events. The 17-year-old from Amaravati won the singles, then bagged the team gold with Jyoti Surekha and Lily Chanu, and later partnered Abhishek Verma to clinch the mixed gold.

India’s M. Punshiva Meitei clinched a gold medal in wushu in the men’s Taolu competition (Nanquan & Nangun). In women’s wushu Taolu (Nanquan & Nandao), Swechcha Jatav bagged a silver medal for India.

Manika Batra and Mouma Das reached the women's table tennis singles semifinals with identical 4-0 victories over Nabita Shrestha (Nepal) and Mueena Mohamed of Maldives respectively. The country’s men paddlers, G. Sathiyan and A. Amalraj, too, entered the men’s individual last four clashes.

After a three-day gap, India will take on Sri Lanka in its second league match of the women's football competition.

The results:

Badminton

Men: Final: India bt Sri Lanka 3-0 (K. Srikanth bt Buwanaka Goonathileka 21-14, 21-14; H.S. Prannoy bt Sachin Dias 21-13, 21-16; Manu Attri & Sumeeth Reddy bt Goonathileka & Dias 21-12, 21-11; Semifinals: India bt Pakistan 3-0; Sri Lanka bt Bangladesh 3-0.

Women: Final: India bt Sri Lanka 3-0 (P.V. Sindhu bt Kavindi Ishadika Sirimannage 21-7, 21-5; Ruthvika Shivani bt Thilini Pramodika 23-21, 21-13; Ashwini Ponappa & P.V. Sindhu bt Achini Rathnasiri & Upuli Samathika 21-13, 21-13; Semifinals: Sri Lanka bt Nepal 3-0; India bt Bangladesh 3-0.

Archery: (all Finals): Compound: Men: Team: India bt Bhutan 230-219; Individual: Rajat Chauhan bt Abhishek Verma 144-142; Women: Team: India bt Bangladesh 228-217; Mixed: India bt Bangladesh 156-138; Individual: Purvasha Sudhir Shende bt Jyoti Surekha 138-133.