Jakarta, Aug 28: India currently stands at the eighth spot in Asian Games medals tally with – 9 Gold, 19 Silver and 22 Bronze taking their total tally to 50.
A jobless Manjit Singh came from nowhere to snatch the men’s 800m gold for the biggest medal of his life but finals continued to be a riddle for P V Sindhu, taking some sheen off her historic silver at the 18th Asian Games today.
An unexpected haul of a silver and a bronze in Kurash, an indigenous central Asian form of wrestling, added to the tally, along with a silver in the debut event of the mixed 4x400m relay in athletics.
With today’s performance, India rose a rung to eighth in the overall standings with a total of 50 medals, nine of them gold, 19 silver and 22 bronze medals. The country is now just seven short of matching the 2014 tally.
The 31-year-old Manjit, an unheralded runner from Haryana who doesn’t even have a national gold to his credit, chose the Asian Games to find the limelight.
In fact, he snatched it from the seasoned Jinson Johnson with a personal best of 1:46.15sec. Johnson finished second for a silver, a rare 1-2 for India at the Games.
“I saw videos of my races at national and international events and analysed the mistakes. I was motivated to improve myself. I never thought of bettering the national mark. I just wanted to give my best. I don’t have a job but my coach is from Army,” said the athlete, who lives in Jind, Haryana, and comes from a family of farmers.
India then clinched a silver 4x400m mixed relay race, finishing behind Bahrain.
The quartet of Muhammed Anas, M R Poovamma, Hima Das and Arokia Rajiv clocked 3:15.71 seconds, while Bahrain ran away with the gold in 3:11.89.
In the morning competitions, compound archers picked up silver medals in both the men’s and women’s team events, going down to South Korea in both the finals.
It wasn’t a particularly disappointing or unexpected result but the fact that the men could not defend their gold from the 2014 edition would rankle.
(WITH PTI INPUTS)