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  Hockey men enter quarters; Sindhu, Atanu, Satish shine
29 Jul 2021

Barring a heart-breaking elimination of boxing legend MC Mary Kom, India had a fabulous day at the Tokyo Olympic today with men hockey team, star shuttler PV Sindhu, archer Atanu Das and pugilist Satish Kumar brightening medal hopes, registering scintillating wins.

Indian hockey team prevailed over reigning Olympic champions Argentina 3-1 in their fourth Pool-A match to secure a quarterfinal berth with one match hand at the Oi Hockey Stadium. This was the third win for Indian men and put them in the second position in the group table.

Drag-flicker Varun Kumar, who was called up as an Alternate Player in place of Odisha defender Birendra Lakra, drew first blood, off a penalty corner in the 43rd minute. But Maico Casella equalized for Argentina, converting a penalty corner in the 48th minute.


However, one superb goal each by Vivek Sagar Prasad (58-FG) and Harmanpreet Singh (59-PC) in the last two minutes of the hard-fought match, saw India clinch the thrilling win. India will play their last group match against Japan tomorrow.

Reigning World champion and Rio Olympics silver medallist PV Sindhu stormed into the quarterfinals, defeating Mia Blichfeldt of Denmark 21-15, 21-13 in her third singles match. She will next meet Akane Yamaguchi of Japan tomorrow.

Atanu Das beat two-time Olympic champion Oh Jin-Hyek of South Korea 6-5 in shoot off to progress to the men individual recurve Round of 16. The exciting match went to the shoot off round after the five-set regulation contest ended in a tie.

In the shoot off, Das scored a perfect 10 to win the second-round match 25-26, 27-27, 27-27, 27-22, 28-28, 10-9. Earlier in the first round Das beat Yu-Cheng Deng of Chinese Taipei 6-4 (27-26, 27-28, 28-26, 27-28, 28-26).

Making his Olympic debut, Indian super heavyweight (+91kg) Satish Kumar beat Ricardo Brown of Jamaica 4-1 in to march into quarterfinals comfortably. First Indian super heavyweight boxer to qualify for Olympics, Satish will next meet World champion Bakhodir Jalolov of Uzbekistan.

But the day for India ended on a sad note as six-time world champion and London Olympics bronze medallist Mary Kom went down fighting to Ingrit Valencia of Colombia in her 51kg pre-quarterfinal bout by a split 2-3 verdict. The defeat ended the Olympic journey of the 38-year-old Mary Kom, who felt she was the winner of her bout today.

According new rule of the International Boxing Association (AIBA), men and women boxers between ages of 19 to 40 are categorised as elite boxers and only elite boxers are allowed to participate in the Olympics. As per the rules, Mary Kom would not be eligible for the 2024 Paris Olympics as she would be 41 years old by that time.

Meanwhile, stage was set for Odisha sprint sensation Dutee Chand to start her 100m campaign tomorrow. She will feature in one of the seven heats, which are scheduled between 8.45 am and 9.33 am. Dutee would also be competing in 200m sprint.
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TOP: Indian archer Atanu Das in action at Tokyo Olympics on 29 July, 2021.
RIGHT: Indian boxing legend MC Mary Kom expresses her emotion after getting eliminated at the Tokyo Olympics on 29 July, 2021.


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