From Indian men’s hockey team winning a gold after 16 years to a splendid victory by both the Kabaddi teams. From the unfortunate Sarita Devi controversy to the amazing winners who gave India 8th spot in the final rank tally. Here is all you need to know about India’s performance at the Asian Games 2014.
The Asian Games 2014 held at Incheon, South Korea, came to a close on October 4 and India held the 8th position in the rank tally with a total of 57 medals in its kitty. While some might argue that the country’s performance has not been as good as the previous edition of the games where India finished at 6th spot with 14 gold medals, we think the country did pretty well in grabbing medals in some new categories like compound archery and sailing.
With a total of 57 medals that include 11 Gold, 10 Silver and 36 Bronze, Indian athletes did show us some high moments in the game. So let’s relive some of the most memorable moments of the games.
The Gold Diggers
The opening act by Jitu Rai
The young shooting sensation, Jitu Rai started the Asian Games on a bright note by winning India’s first gold medal on the opening day itself in men’s 50 metre pistol shooting. He grabbed the medal by defeating strong opponents like China and two-time world Olympic champion South Korea. Read more about Jitu Rai’s fascinating rise in the international sports arena.
Indian Men’s Hockey team bring backs the gold in a historic win
After 16 years, the Indian Men’s Hockey team won a gold medal reserving a berth for itself in the 2016 Rio Olympics. The memorable victory over rivals Pakistan brought much cheer to the country especially as it was a close fight. India last defeated Pakistan in an Asian Games final 48 years ago in Bangkok, and this year India’s goalie P. R. Sreejesh gave the nation a big reason to rejoice. On the other hand, the Indian women’s hockey team settled with a bronze.
Owning the Kabaddi
Another amazing victory and moment of pride came India’s way when both the men and women Kabbadi teams won gold medals in their respective final matches. With the women’s team beating Iran easily in the match, the men’s team too looked confident. The men’s team came under pressure when they could not score even a single point in the first half of the match but they raised their game in the second half and brought the match to a state of tie in no time. Balwant Singh’s incredible performance in the last few minutes of the game won us a gold! Kudos to both the teams!
Women 4×400 Relay Athletic
India’s quartet of Priyanka Panwar, Tintu Luka, Mandeep Kaur and M R Poovamma finished an easy race in 3:28.68 breaking the earlier Games record of 3:29.02 also held by Indian team. The amazing team defeated Japan in the final race and won the shining gold medal.
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Men’s Squash Team
Saurav Ghosal, Harinder Pal Singh Sandhu, Mahesh Mangaonkar and Kumar Kush grabbed the gold medal after beating Malaysia 2-0 in the final. On the other hand, the women’s squash team bagged the silver medal in the games.
Mary Kom did it again!
Well, this lady surely deserves a special mention as she wins her first Asian Games gold medal in women’s 48-51 kg boxing. She also became the first Indian woman boxer to receive gold at this platform after defeating Kazakhstan. This five time world champion and Olympic bronze medalist’s current victory is even more special because she returned to the ring after a break of two years in which she delivered her third baby. What a comeback lady! Indeed a superwoman act, isn’t it?
The other gold winners
Apart from amazing victories by teams, these solo winners stand tall in the medal tally as they contributed to the 11 golds that India won in the games:
Sandeep Kumar, Rajat Chauhan, Abhishek Verma: Men’s Compound Team Archery
Yogeshwar Dutt: Men’s Freestyle 65 kg Wrestling
Seema Punia: Women’s Discus Throw Athletics
Sania Mirza, Saketh Myneni: Tennis Mixed Doubles
What we did different?
This year, India created quite a stir by grabbing medals in some new disciplines. Apart from a gold medal in compound archery, Khushbir Kaur won a silver in Women’s 20 km race walk athletics.
Varsha Gautam, Aishwarya Nedunchezhiyan won bronze in Women’s 29er two person dinghy sailing
What caught the eyeballs?
With several medals in the kitty, the games got into a controversy when Indian boxer, Sarita Devi had to settle with a bronze after a “wrong decision” by the judges at the event. To show her dissent, Devi refused to accept the bronze and left it at the podium during the prize ceremony. Here is the complete track of the incident and full story on what exactly happened.
So this year, despite some controversies and lesser number of medals, India shone in glory with some amazing medals and victories. Congratulations and kudos to the Indian contingent and we hope for even bigger and better successes in the future!