Shooter Sift Kaur of India sets a new world record and wins gold at the Asian Games
Shooter Sift Kaur of India sets a new world record and wins gold at the Asian Games

On a fantastic Wednesday at the 19th Asian Games in Hangzhou, Indian shooters won seven medals, bringing the country’s total to 22 medals and five gold medals. This was largely due to the phenomenal performance of rifle shooter Sift Kaur Samra in the women’s 50m rifle 3-positions, who set a world record in the individual event.

India took home eight medals on Wednesday: seven in shooting and one in sailing, courtesy of Vishnu Sarvananan’s bronze in the Men’s Dinghy-ILCA7 competition in far-flung Ningbo.

After tallying up their gold, silver, and bronze medals, India finished in seventh place. China has won a total of 140 medals so far; 76 are gold, 43 are silver, and 21 are bronze, putting them well on their way to being the first country to win 100 gold medals. With precisely half as many medals, the Republic of Korea comes in at number two. Their total of 70 includes 19 gold, 18 silver, and 33 bronze.


Rifle shooting made its debut in the 1954 Asian Games in Manila, and ever since then, the day has belonged to the shooters, especially Sift Kaur, who was magnificent on the route to becoming the first Indian shooter to win an Asian Games gold medal in the sport.

The 22-year-old MBBS student from Faridkot, Punjab, qualified in second place for the final, quickly claimed the lead, and never looked back as she scored fantastic scores and established a new world record of 469.6 points. Similarly, Ashi Chouksey’s third-place performance in the individual competition earned silver for India in the women’s 50-metre rifle 3-positions.

Before, Sift and Ashi had teamed up with Manini Kaushik to take second place in the team combination, behind China.

On Wednesday, India’s female pistol shooters (Rhythm Sangwan, Manu Bhaker, and Esha Singh) won their second gold medal of the day in the 25-metre pistol event, beating out China (1756) and Korea (1742) for first place.

Manu Bhaker was upset to place fifth after leading the qualification stage with outstanding shooting in both the precision and quick portions, but Esha returned to the range and won silver in the individual competition.

Shotgunner Anant Jeet Singh Naruka won two medals on Wednesday: a historic silver in the men’s skate individual competition and a bronze in the men’s skate team competition with Angad Vir Singh Bajwa and Gurjoat Singh Khangura.

In the Asian Games skeet sport, India finally won a medal for the first time since the 1974 event in Tehran. Brilliantly, Anant Jeet Singh matched the legendary Abdullah Al-Rashidi of Kuwait, a three-time World Champion, a two-time Olympic bronze medalist, and a two-time Asian Games gold medalist, shot for shot for 42 targes before missing two in the next two series and finishing with a score of 58 out of 60 in the individual competition.

By matching Angar Vir Singh Bajwa of India’s flawless score, Al-Rashidi tied the world record.

Nethra Kumanan and India missed out on a medal opportunity after Wednesday’s races were called off due to a lack of wind. Kumanan’s career came to an end after the second-to-last race, when she finished in fourth place.

India’s Vishnu Saravanan, competing in the Men’s Dinghy-ILCA7 class, too had his gold medal hopes dashed due to the lack of wind. In the 10th and 11th races, Vishnu Saravanan finished second and first, respectively, to vault himself into medal contention. On Wednesday, he should have gone for gold but settled for bronze.

Roshibina Devi Naorem, who had previously beaten Thi Thu Thuy Nguyen of Vietnam 2-0 in the quarterfinals of women’s sando 60kg, won a medal for India in the Wushu games.

Indian boxing fans were left feeling down as veteran fighters Shiva Thaka (67 kg) and Sanjeet (92 kg) both lost their matches. Two-time World Champion Nikhat Zareen gave the crowd a boost later in the evening with her convincing Round of 16 win against Chorong Bak of South Korea in the women’s 50 kilogramme division.

Neither Sumit Nagal nor Ankita Raina fared well in their respective men’s or women’s singles matches on the tennis courts at the Hangzhou Olympic Sports Centre on India’s dismal day. While Ankita fell to Japanese opponent Kaji Naruka 6-3, 4-6, 4-6, Nagal was defeated in three sets by Chinese opponent Zhang Zhizhen (7-6(3), 1-6, 2-6).



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