Indian pugilists cover themselves in glory at Military World Games

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Hyderabad, Oct 15 (UNI) Indian pugilists came out firing to give the home fans something to cheer as Russia and China began the race for glory on the first day itself, which saw two new CISM records being rewritten in the 4th Military World Games here today.

Triple jumper Bibu Mathew missed the podium by finishing fourth in men's triple jump with a leapt of 16.12m.

In boxing, National Games winner Narjit Singh set the tone with a show of ruthless attack against Nampala Ruben of Namibia in the 54kg category first round bout.

His domination was such that the referee had to stop fight after the Indian had taken 24-4 lead in the second round. Thoi Thoi did not have to face much challenge in his 19-9 victory over Benkhaoula Imad of Algeria in 60 kg.

In the 64 kg, Satya Raju had to work harder in his 27-17 win over another Algerian Filali Nasreddine though the Indian's superiority was never in doubt. D Bhagyaranjan then toyed with Tello Moejane of Lesotho in the 69 kg first round bout with a 19-3 verdict.

But, it is disappointment for the Indian militarymen in other disciplines with the handball and volleyball teams biting dust against formidable opponents.

South Korea brushed aside Indians' spirited challenge in handball with a clinical 40-29 victory while India gave a scare to China before going down 26-28, 22-25, 18-25 in volleyball.

The nippy Koreans exchanged the ball in lightning speed and never allowed the Indians to narrow down the gap in score line which kept on increasing till it was a 10 goal difference at 13-23 at the half time which finally widened to 29-40 at the end of 60-minute handball match.

Today's defeat would mean that India will have to come out something extraordinary on Wednesday's match against Greece who are also no pushovers having finished among top six in the World Championships in 2001 and 2002.

In track and field Indians failed to live up to the expectations while in swimming India's presence was almost non-existent.

Anil Kumar failed to qualify for finals in 100m race though Sarish Paul qualified for semi-final in 400m.

Meanwhile, the race for top slot began on the first day itself with Russia as topper in the last two editions of the Games, collecting seven gold to China's five. Russia set the pool ablaze by winning six gold there including a new CISM record set by Darya in women's 200m individual medley.

This was after Chinese Zhou Yafei rewrote her own CISM record in women's 100m butterfly.

Elena Bolsun added joy to the Russians by becoming the fastest women athlete after winning the 100m sprint. Her 11.45 sec effort though missed the Games record of 11.41s by a whisker, set by another Russian Ekaterina Leshcheva in Rome in 1999.

Bettina Moller Weissina (11.51s) of Austria and Daria Rorcrynska (11.54s) of Poland finished second and third respectively.

Evgeny Lagunov, Falko Grigory and Nikolay Skvortsov then came first for Russia in men's 100m freestyle, 100m breast stroke and 100m butterfly respectively while Daniela Samulski, Darya and Elena Bogomazova bagged the fourth, fifth and sixth gold in swimming by winning women's 100m freestyle, 200m individual medley and 100m breast stroke.

Darya then shared the limelight with Yafei by entering her name in the record books of CISM in women's 200m individual medley. Her effort of 2 min 15.92 sec erased earlier record of 2 min 17.40 sec jointly shared by Chinese Qi Hui and Pu Yiqi.

Earlier, China opened their account with Zhide Cui winning men's 20 km walk competition, clocking 1:23: 43.

But, it was Zhou Yafei who stole the limelight by breaking her own Games record of 59.32s set in the last edition in Catania (Italy ) by clocking 59.05s in 100m butterfly at the Gachibowli Swimming Pool.

Russians made it two three with Irina Bespalova and Natalia Sutyagina clocking 1 minute 0.18 secs and 1 min 0.19 secs.

Zhao Tao added another gold for China by coming first in 200m individual medley. He clocked 2 minutes and 3.70 secs, ahead of compatriot Qu Jingyu (2 mins and 5.20 secs) and Russian Andrey Krylov (2 mins and 5.74 s).

China 's fourth gold came from Li Shixin who came first in men's one metre springboard diving. She scored 134.50 points while compatriot Zhang Xinhua secured 132.00 to collect silver.

India 's Kunja Kishor and W Yogesh finished 14th and 15th in the event totalling dismal 81.50 and 68.00 points respectively.

Zhang Wenxiu gave China the fifth gold by winning the women's hammer throw after clearing 72.25m.

Germany, Slovenia and Ukraine have won one gold each so far.

UNI

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