It was a day of last-minute misses for India at Rio today – Abhinav Bindra missed a medal by a whisker, and the men's hockey team lost to defending champs Germany with just 3 seconds left. The women's hockey team also lost its match, while both Indian entries in trap shooting failed to make the cut.
Women’s Archery (individual event – Round of 64)
The Indian archers’ disappointing run in the Olympics continued once again today as Laxmirani Majhi bowed out of the event after losing to Alexandra Longova 1-5 in the Round of 64 encounter.
The Indian failed to find her rhythm and hit 9, 9 and 8 in the first set, while the Slovakian hit 10, 9 and 7 to take the set 27-25. 10s once again evaded her in the second set, and the Slovakian made it 4-0 for her.
Majhi’s first 10 came in the third set, and she managed to tie it 26-26 to open her scoring in the match. But her improvement in performance came a bit too late, and she surrendered the fourth set tamely to go out of the competition.
Men’s 10m air rifle
In a nail-biting final in the men’s 10m air rifle, India’s 2008 Olympic gold medallist Abhinav Bindra missed out on a medal after finishing fourth in the event. In a tense shoot-off, Bindra shot a 10, while Ukraine’s Serhiy Kulish shot a 10.5 to remain in the last three and to confirm a medal.
In the final, Bindra started poorly and only managed 29.9 in his first three shots. He bounced back in the next three shots and jumped from 7th to 5th with a score of 30.2. Before the first elimination, he shot 20.7 to move into third spot. He continued his good form and shot 21.5 once again in the next series of two shots and moved into a bronze medal spot.
Bindra hit a 10.7 in the next shot to jump into the second spot, but a 10.1 in the next shot pushed him back to third. After 12 shots, he was 0.1 behind the second-placed Russian Vladimir Maslennikov and 0.8 behind Ukraine’s Serhiy Kulish, who was at first.
Bindra, then, hit a 9.7 and 10.5 in the next two shots to remain in the third place. With the bronze in sight, Bindra hit a 9.9 to slip to fourth. He hit 10.2 in the 16th shot, but the Ukrainian hit a 9.7. With both players tied on 163.8, the duo went into a shoot-off for a place in the last three. The Ukrainian hit a 10.5, but Bindra only managed a 10 as he bowed out of the event with a medal in sight.
Bindra, who will retire from shooting after the Rio Olympics, came agonisingly close to securing another medal for India. But, it wasn’t to be.
Earlier, Abhinav Bindra qualified for the final in the seventh position after scoring 625.7, while Gagan Narang finished 23rd with 621.7 to miss out on the finals.
Despite dominating the Group B clash against Germany, India were left to rue missed opportunities as Christopher Ruhr scored a goal in the dying seconds of the game to win the match 2-1 for his nation.
Niklas Wellen gave Germany the lead in the 17th minute. After some patient build-up play outside the shooting circle, Wellen was picked out in the box by a piercing pass, and he found the left bottom corner of the net with a well-placed shot.
India did not take long to reply, though. Minutes after conceding the opening goal, SV Sunil won a penalty corner for India after a fantastic run down the right wing. Rupinder Singh stepped up and blazed a low and powerful drive past Nicolas Jacobi in the German goal to make it 1-1, with just 6 minutes to go for the halftime. It was his third goal of the tournament, after scoring two against Ireland in the opener.
But, with 3.1 seconds remaining on the clock, Christopher Ruhr scored the winner for Germany with a lucky deflection that just evaded Sreejesh, and landed in the corner of the net.
In another disappointment for India, Manavjit Singh Sandhu and Kynan Chenai failed to qualify of the semi-finals of the men’s trap event after finishing 16th and 19th respectively. Manavjit scored 115 in the qualification round, while Kynan Chenia scored 114.
On the first day of qualification, Manavjit had scored 68 points and Chenia had scored 67. Today Manavjit started with a brilliant round of 25 out of 25, but his last round proved to be a disaster, where he scored 22. Chenai scored 24 and 23 on the day, but the misses proved to be costly for him.
Shivani Katarai finished with a timing of 2:09.30 at 41st place in the women's 200m freestyle event, where only the top 16 progressed to the next round. However, given she carried no medal expectations, this was not bad at all.
Sajan Prakash finished 28th with a timing of 1:59:37, almost 5 seconds behind the leader Tamas Kenderesi of Hungary, and failed to qualify for the next round.
The women's team had a disappointing outing against Great Britain losing XX . England opened the score in the early parts of the second quarter off a corner, when Ansley's drag-flick into the right side of the net beat goalie Savita Punia.
They made it 2-0 within 3 minutes. A brisk sally into the D by the English attackers, and Nicola White's prod sneaked between Savita's feet.
In the third quarter, banking on India's poor defending, Britain made a straightforward run from the left flank onto the goalmouth past three defenders, and Alexandra Danson sent the ball on to the target from her spot right in front of goal to make it 3-0. The last quarter proved to be goal-less as India ended the match with a 0-3 defeat.
Lasith Malinga or Bhuvneshwar Kumar? Who will take more wickets?
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