India win gold in Asian Grand Prix archery


India made a rich haul of one gold, three silver and a bronze medal in the individual section of the first Asian Grand Prix archery tournament at Bangkok on Saturday.

Two teenage sensations, Chittibomma Jignas and National champion Rajat Chauhan, combined to give India 1-2 in the men's compound event, according to information received here.

In an all-Indian final, the 18-year-old Services' archer subdued Chauhan in the tie-breaker after the two tied at 144-144. Both hit the bull's eye but Jignas' arrow was found to be closer to the centre and gave him the second international gold after the silver he bagged at the third Asian Grand Prix at Dhaka in May last.

It was a remarkable show by Rajashtan boy Chauhan, who reached the final on his maiden international assignment, after having emerged national champion in all the three age groups: sub-junior, junior and senior in the same year.

In the semi-finals, Chauhan ousted Nguyen at 149-147 and Jignas eliminated compatriot Ritul Chatterjee 147-143.

It could have been a clean sweep by the Indians had Chatterjee not lost the bronze play-off to Nguyen Tien Cuong of Vietnam at 143-147.

India's quest to win the most coveted events of all, the recurve division, did not come off. The country's two final entries, Mangal Singh Champia and Chekrovolu Swuro, have not done well in individual events over the years.
That they managed to win silver medals was indeed praiseworthy.

Champia came up against a vastly experienced Romain Girouille of France in the men's recurve final where the two shared the five sets to tie the score at 5-5. In the one-arrow tie-breaker, the Frenchman shot a nine to the Indian's eight in a touch and go contest.

Earlier, Champia won against Spain's Elias Cuesta by 7-3 set points in the semifinals.

Chekrovolu, who held an upper hand in the women's recurve final against Ren Hayakawa of Japan, erred at the beginning of the third set.

After taking the first two sets and a commanding 4-0 set points, the Indian needed just one more set to win the gold. Chekrovolu's first arrow of the third set hit the seven point ring which unnerved the Indian.

Ren shot a 10 and a nine to take the set. Chekrovolu cracked in the fourth set shooting 8,9,9 to her opponent's 10,8,10. The deciding set was a touch and go affair with the confident Japanese winning it in the end.

In the semis, Chekrovolu edged past Urangungalag Bishindee of Mongolia in the tie-break after both shared the five sets to tie the set score at 5-5. In the tie-breaker, the Indian's bull's eye was found to be closer to the centre than the Mongolian's shot.

Both the Indian entries in the women's compound bowed out in the semi final. Jhano Hansdah lost to ultimate gold medal winner Aung Ngeain of Myanmar 142-145 and Gagandeep Kaur fell to silver medallist Nurfatehah Mat Salleh Fatin of Malaysia 141-143.

In the battle for bronze, Jhano prevailed over her much younger opponent in the tie-breaker after a 139-139 tie. Jhano broke the stalemate by hitting the bull's eye while Gagandeep collected only 8.

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