It was a golden outing on day 14 for India at 2018 Asian Games. India won four medals, including two gold on the finals day of the competitions. With a total of 15 gold medals at the 2018 Asian Games, India has equalled their best finish of the 1951 Asian Games. The overall tally of 69 surpassed India’s medal tally of 65 medals at the 2010 Guangzhou Games. This is now India’s highest ever medal tally at the Asian Games.
India finished the final day with a gold each in Boxing and Bridge, a silver in Squash and a bronze in men’s Hockey.
Day 14 – India at Asian Games 2018
Amit Panghal brought home the 14th gold medal for India after he defeated Uzbekistan’s Hasanboy Dusmatov in men’s 49kg category finals. After Vikas Krishan was forced to pull out of his semi-final bout due to an injury, Amit was the only medal hope for India in boxing.
Panghal won the final bout on the split decision of 3-2 to win India’s first gold in Boxing at the Jakarta and Palembang Games. It was a tough bout for Amit, as Dusmatov is a 2016 Rio Olympics gold medallist and the reigning champion.
The 2018 Commonwealth Games silver medallist had lost to his Uzbek opponent in the quarterfinals of the Hamburg World Championships in 2017. The medal will be of special importance for Amit as this were his maiden Asian Games.
India finished the Asian Games with a historic gold medal in the men’s pair event of Bridge. Pranab Bardhan and Shibnath Sarkar won the top honours for India after finishing ahead of Chinese pair. Bardhan (60) and Sarkar (56) became the first Indians to clinch a gold in Bridge, which was introduced at the 2018 Asian Games.
At the age of 60 years, Bardhan also became the oldest Indian to win a gold medal for India at the Asian Games. The pair of Sumit Mukherjee and Debabrata Majumder, however, finished ninth in the same event.
In the women’s pair event, Hema Deora and Marianne Karmarkar finished seventh, while in the mixed pair event, India failed to achieve a podium finish.
India had sent a 24-member contingent for Bridge at the 2018 Asian Games and had won a bronze medal each in the men’s and mixed team events.
The Indian women’s Squash team had to settle for a silver medal after they lost to Hong Kong in in the finals. It was second successive silver for the Indian team at the Asian Games.
In the finals this year, Sunayna Kuruvilla and Joshna Chinappa lost their respective matches as India suffered a second loss from hong Kong in the women’s team event. They had earlier lost to the same team in the group stages.
India had earlier surprised defending champions Malaysia in the semi-finals. In Squash, India finished with a total five medals, which include four bronze and one silver. Dipika Pallikal and Joshna Chinappa had earlier won a bronze medal each at the 2018 Asian Games in individual events.
It is to be noted that the Indian team were playing without a proper coach in the competition as their demand for higher standard coach was not taken into account.
After a disappointing loss to Malaysia in the men’s semi-finals, the Indian hockey team faced arch-rivals Pakistan for the bronze medal. Continuing their recent dominance over the neighbours, India won the match 2-1 to settle for a bronze medal.
In the bronze medal match, India took a lead in the third minute with a goal from Akashdeep Singh. Harmanpreet Singh’s penalty corner goal in the 50th minute gave India a lead of two goals into the fourth quarter.
Pakistan started the counter-attack in the fourth quarter and soon Mohammad Atiq scored the goal for Pakistan in the 52nd minute. However, the defending champions and the tournament favourite kept Pakistan on back-foot, giving them no chance to score until the game ended.
While the hockey fans had seen a possibility of the India-Pakistan clash in the 2018 Asian Games, it was for the gold medal match. However, the bronze medal match was no less than a thriller.
Both men’s and women’s hockey team have failed to directly qualify for the 2020 Olympics. They will now have to go through a long and tedious qualifying round. Japan, who had earlier won a gold in the women’s hockey event, went on to win another gold in the men’s event after they defeated Malaysian team in a nail-biter finals.
India managed to produce their best finish in the 2018 Asian Games with 15 gold, 24 silver and 30 bronze medals. They are placed eighth in the medal table of the 2018 Asian Games, with China