Talukdar, Deepika reign supreme in the recurve section

29-year-old Jayanta, who is employed with Tata Steel, was delighted with his third national individual gold medal. He said the effort gave him a lot of satisfaction, as it was achieved against a strong field.

Jayanta Talukdar defeated surprise-finalist Mukesh Tamang of Meghalaya 6-2.   -  R. V. Moorthy

Deepika Kumari won the gold medal in the women's recurve event, despite battling ill health.   -  R. V. Moorthy

Jayanta Talukdar recaptured the old magic to clinch the men’s recurve gold medal after a gap of nine years in the 36th National archery championship at the Kailash Parkash Stadium on Sunday. Deepika Kumari subdued Bombayla Devi, who had topped the qualification round, to win the women’s title.

29-year-old Jayanta, who is employed with Tata Steel, was delighted with his third national individual gold medal. He said the effort gave him a lot of satisfaction, as it was achieved against a strong field. He had topped the qualification round, beating 150-odd archers. He stayed consistent right through the 64-member knock-out phase to eventually beat surprise-finalist Mukesh Tamang of Meghalaya 6-2. “I had won the silver medal in 2011 and the gold medals in 2005 and 2006. I have been performing well recently and had the confidence to do well here,” Jayanta said, looking forward to continuing the good spell in the Asian championship.

It was an interesting fare and some of the best archers like Mangal Singh Champia in the men’s section and Rimil Buriuly in the women’s event were eliminated early in the knock-out phase. Champia, who had won the only Olympic quota place for the Indian men, was beaten in the tie-break 9-8 by Somnath Mondal of Bengal in the first round.

The accomplished Deepika Kumari was not tested much, by her own admission, and it suited her well. Deepika had earlier complained of poor health. She beat Bombayla Devi 6-2 after an initial resistance by the Railways archer. “I am not fully satisfied with my performance, but I’m happy to win the event,” Deepika said.

Deepika and Binod Siwansi were beaten for the mixed team gold medal by the un-fancied pairing of Himani Boro and Sanjay Boro of Assam, who had earlier knocked out the Railways duo, Rahul Banerjee and Bombayla Devi. The Assamese pair won the tie-break, after the tie was locked at 4-4.

Deepika Kumari, Reena Kumari and N. Lavanya were unable to battle the Railways in an interesting women’s final. The Railways team, comprising of Bombayla Devi, Rimil Buriuly, Laxmi Rani Majhi and Satbir Kaur, won the tie-breaker 27-25, after the teams were tied at 4-4.

There was much drama in the men’s team final, as Mangal Singh Champia was not warned about the time clock during the tie-break. The three archers in a team are expected to fire an arrow each within a minute during the tie-break. A delayed release by Champia resulted in a red card and his team were docked the points from the best arrow. Rahul Banerjee, Dhaniram Basumatary and Kapil were the other members of the Railways men’s team. Haryana, who had qualified in the 16th place, and were represented by Jayant Kumar, Dheeraj Malik, Robin and Deepak, had the last laugh, and won the gold medal against all odds.

The results: Recurve: Men’s (final): Jayanta Talukdar (SPSB) bt Mukesh Tamang (Meg) 6-2. Third place: Binod Swansi (Jha) bt Sanjay Boro (Asm) 6-4. Semi-finals: Jayanta Talukdar bt Sanjay Boro 6-4; Mukesh Tamang bt Binod Swansi 6-4. Quarter-finals: Jayanta Talukdar bt Bulbul Marandi (Ser) 6-4; Sanjay Boro bt Atanu Das (PSPB) 6-4; Binod Swansi bt Chaman Singh (UP) 6-0; Mukesh Tamang bt Gautam Singh (J&K) 7-1.

Team (final): Haryana bt Railways 6-4 (26-19); Third place: Services bt Madhya Pradesh 6-0.

Women’s (final): Deepika Kumari (Jha) bt Bombayla Devi (Rly) 6-2; Third place: Sumandeep Kaur (CRPF) bt Simranjeet Kaur (Pun) 6-4. Semi-finals: Bombayla Devi bt Sumandeep Kaur 6-5 (9-8); Deepika Kumari bt Simranjeet Kaur 6-0. Quarter-finals: Bombayla Devi bt N. Lavanya (Jha) 6-2; Sumandeep Kaur bt Laxmi Rani Majhi (Rly) 6-4; Simranjeet Kaur bt Himani Boro (Asm) 6-2; Deepika Kumari bt Komal Sharma (Pun) 6-2.

Team (final): Railways bt Jharkhand 6-4 (27-25). Third place: Punjab bt Maharashtra 6-2.

Mixed team (final): Assam (Himani Boro, Sanjay Boro) bt Jharkhand (Deepika Kumari, Binod Siwansi) 5-3. Third place: Rajasthan (Seema Sihoria, Jagdish Choudhary) bt Railways (Bombayla Devi, Rahul Banerjee) 5-1. Semi-finals: Jharkhand bt Rajasthan 6-2; Assam bt Railways 6-4 (19-16); Quarter-finals: Jharkhand bt Uttar Pradesh 6-0; Rajasthan bt Gujarat 5-3; Assam bt CRPF 5-1; Railways bt Punjab 6-2.

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