Star Indian shooter Abhinav Bindra clinched individual and team bronze medals in his last Asian Games while squash player Saurav Ghosal had to be content with a historic silver as India added five more medals to boost their tally to nine on the fourth day of competitions in Incheon, South Korea on Tuesday.While Bindra was the star performer as he picked up the individual as well as team bronze in the men's 10m air rifle event, Ghosal narrowly missed out on a coveted yellow metal on what turned out to be a mixed day for the Indian contingent.
From left to right, China's Cao Yifei (silver medallist), China's Yang Haoran (gold medallist) and India's Abhinav Bindra (bronze medallist) pose after the medal ceremony of the men's 10m air rifle individual event at the 2014 Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea. (AFP Photo)
Meanwhile, Wushu players delivered two bronze through Yumnam Sanathoi Devi and Narender Grewal after they lost their respective semi-final contests to cap off India's campaign in the sport on an impressive note.
With the addition of five more medals, India maintained their 13th position in the medals table with a tally of one gold, one silver and nine bronze. Powerhouse China continued to top the table, followed by hosts South Korea and Japan.
Bindra, who had announced that he will quit competitive shooting after the multi-sporting event, broke his Asian Games jinx by clinching his first individual medal after bagging a medal of the same hue in team event along with Sanjeev Rajput and Ravi Kumar at the Gyeonggido Shooting Range.
The Glasgow Commonwealth Games gold medallist had a fine sequence of scores barring 9.9 and 9.6 on his 6th and 12th shots, and had to be content with the bronze medal after shooting 10.6 and 10.7 in his last two shots.
It was heartbreak for Ghosal, Asian number one and tournament top seed, as he snatched defeat from the jaws of victory after squandering a commanding 2-0 lead against Abdullah Al Muzayen in the men's singles squash final.
The Indian world no. 16 led his 5-8 seeded Kuwaiti rival 12-10, 11-2 when Abdullah came up a stunning turnaround to turn the tables on Ghosal for the gold.Abdullah, ranked 46th in the world, produced top drawer stuff when he was down and out for the count to manage a 10-12, 2-11, 14-12, 11-8, 11-9 win that stunned the Indian camp, and the player especially, into deep despair, notwithstanding that it was country's first ever silver from the squash courts in Games history.
Silver medal winner Saurav Ghosal poses during the medal ceremony for the men's individual squash event at the 2014 Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea. (PTI Photo)
Apart from Bindra and his team's bronze-winning effort, there was disappointment for the other Indian shooters who were in action on Tuesday.
In trap women's team finals, India's Shreyasi Singh (66 pts) Seema Tomar (63) and Shagun Chowdhary (59) finished at eighth place after scoring a total of 188.
In the men's 25m rapidfire pistol event, Harpreet Singh was lying seventh with a score of 290 after qualification stage 1, while the other two shooters Gurpreet Singh and Pemba Tamang finished way behind. As a team also, they could not do much.
The Indian men's hockey team continued their winning run as they thrashed minnows Oman 7-0 but were far from impressive in their performance.
Rupinderpal (18th, 19th min) successfully converted two penalty corners before limping off the field after scoring the second goal. The unbelievably off-colour Raghunath (39th, 60th min+) managed two goals via penalty stroke and penalty corner.
Akshdeep Singh (33rd), Ramandeep Singh (54th) and Danish Mujtaba (60th) were the other scorers.
The worrying factor for India will be ace drag-flicker Rupinderpal's injury before the crucial game against arch-rivals Pakistan.
In cycling, Indians continued to struggle as Deborah and K Vargheese finished 9th and 10th respectively in women's sprint qualifying.
Deborah and Vargheese clocked 12.118 and 12.897 with an average speed of 59.415 and 55.826, respectively to occupy the last two spots.
After topping their group in the qualifiers, the Indian men's basketball team had a disappointing outing in the opening game of the preliminary round as they went down against Philippines 76-85.
In equestrian also, Indian women Shruti Vohra and Nadia Haridass finished a disappointing 8th and last respectively in the Women's Dressage Individual Intermediate event.
Shruti riding a horse named 'Akira' scored an average 69.375% having scored 71.6% in the 'Artistic' round while she could manage only 67.15% in the 'Technical' round. Her standing in the two rounds were 9th and 8th respectively.
Nadia Haridass finished 15th and last in the event with a poor score of 60.35 with only 57.9% in the 'Technical' round while she could score only 62.8% in the 'Artistic' round.
Rowers, however, produced a creditable show on Tuesday with Sawarn Singh Virk making the final of men's single sculls and the double sculls. The lightweight quadruple sculls teams too entered the medal round.
Sawarn claimed the top place in repechage 1 of the 2000 metre race in seven minutes and 10.93 seconds. The 24-year-old Indian finished ahead of Memo Memo of Indonesia, who took seven minutes and 13.38 seconds to complete the race at the Chungju Tangeum Lake Rowing Centre.
The double sculls team comprising of Om Prakash and Dattu Baban Bhokanal bagged the first place in repechage 2 of their event.
In lightweight men's quadruple sculls repechage 1, India's Rakesh Raliya, Vikram Singh, Sonu Laxmi Narain and Shokendar Tomar finished second with a timing of six minutes and 13.97 seconds.
Beginning their campaign in Sepaktakraw on Tuesday, the Indian men's team went down fighting 1-2 to Japan, while their women counterparts were blanked 0-3 by Myanmar in the preliminary round.
The Indian men had grabbed an impressive lead after the first regu but they found the going tough in the second and third regu to eventually lose 21-16, 18-21, 16-21 in a Group A match that lasted two hours and 26 minutes.
The women's team too started its Group B match against Myanmar on a positive note, winning the first game 22-20 but its opponents came back strongly to clinch the next two games to go 1-0 up after the first regu, which went on for one hour and four minutes.
2010 medal winner Ashish Kumar and Aditya Singh Rana failed to make a mark in the individual all-around gymnastics final after ending 12th and 17th respectively at the Namdong Gymnasium.
Ashish, who won a bronze in men's floor exercise and later a silver medal in men's vault in the 2010 Guanghzou Games, started off well in the floor exercise and fared better in the vault, but came a cropper in the remaining disciplines.
Ashish's accumulated score of 81.750 was way behind the total top score of Japan's Kamoto 87.950.
Meanwhile, Railways gymnast Rana (77.150) suffered due to a string of ordinary landings amongst the 23 gymnasts in the fray.
Indian swimmers continued to struggle at the Asian Games with Sajan Prakash and Saurabh Sangvekar finishing fourth and seventh respectively in their men's 400 metre freestyle heats and Anshul Kothari ending at the sixth spot in 50m freestyle.
Weightlifters also expectedly failed to make a mark Ravi Kumar and Punam Yadav coming up with listless performances.
Silver medallist at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games, Ravi Kumar lifted a total of 313kg after an effort of 141kg in snatch and 172kg in clean and jerk to finish second in Group B. Satish Sivalingam, whose name was there in the initial start list, did not take part due to illness.
In women's 63kg division, Punam, who had bagged a bronze medal at CWG, finished a lowly seventh in the field of nine lifters.