Betters 2014 Youth Olympic Games’ medal tally
India ended the opening day of the 2018 Summer Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires with two silver medals. Tushar Mane and Tababi Devi both finished on the podium, for shooting and judo events respectively. This is India’s best performance after the 2014 Youth Olympic in China.
Devi in particular, wrote history, as she became the first woman athlete to win a medal in judo. The judo player, or judoka, as they as traditionally called, lost to Venezuela’s Maria Gimenez in the 44 kg judo finals.
Devi is a 2017 Asian Cadet champion from Manipur. Gimenez is a continental champion of her own, winning the Pan American U18 gold medal. Gimenez started off with a bang, scoring 1-0 on the ippon and 1-0 on waza-ari. She then got a penalty point. The match ended as 0-2 within 2:08 minutes.
For her credit, though, Tababi Devi was flawless on her way to finals. In the Round of 16, she beat Yangchen Wangmo of Bhutan 10-0, before defeating Kosovo’s Erza Muminovic in the quarters. She then went on to defeat Croatia’s Ana Viktorija Puljiz by a huge 10-0 in the semifinals.
Earlier in the day, Tushar Mane made the country proud, winning India’s first medal at the 2018 Youth Olympic Games. The Kolhapur boy was participating in the 10m air rifle shooting event.
Mane, 16, shot a total score of 247.5. He fell 1.7 points short of Russia’s Grigorii Shamakov, who scored 249.2 in the finals. The silver did not come easily, as he just about managed to edge past Serbia’s Aleksa Mitrovic, by a barely 0.1 points. Although, he later shot 9.6 and 9.99 in the final round to win the podium finish.
Before the finals, Mane shot 623.7 to in the finish third place and booking his place in the finals.
I feel very proud after winning silver and happy that I started the medal tally for India
Mane said after the match.
Speaking on his incredible feat, Suma Shirur, Indian rifle junior team’s performance coach, said he stayed very calm and focussed from qualifying rounds to finals and that he’ll “go upwards from here.”
Indian hockey team crushes Bangladesh
Elsewhere, Indian hockey crushed Bangladesh by a huge margin of 10-0 in their opening match at the men’s Hockey 5s event here in Buenos Aires. Rahul Kumar, Shivam, Sanjar, Rabichandra, Vivek Sagar, Prasad, Sudeep and Maninder all were on target for India’s easy win. Rabichandra, Prasad and Sudeep were especially in top form, scoring two goals apiece.
The Indian contingent bettered their 2014 Youth Olympic Games’ medal tally, where they won one silver and a bronze. Various programs promoted by the government such as Khelo India, National Sports Development Fund and TOPS seem to benefit Indian athletes at last. This year, India also have sent their largest contingent of 46 athletes at the Youth Olympics, participating across 13 sports in all.
Indian Women’s hockey team as well started with a win, defeating Austria 4-2 in their inaugural match in the 2018 Youth Olympics. Lalremsiami (4th, 17th minutes), skipper Salima Tete (5th) and Mumtaz Khan (16th) were on target for what was an easy win.