Chinese swimmer sets new world record, India wins first gold at MWG

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Hyderabad, Oct 19 (UNI) An unheralded Chinese swimmer Yang Li set a new world record in women's 50m backstroke on the penultimate day of the the 4th Military World Games here today.

Yang's 28.09s effort bettered United States swimmer Leila Vaziri's 28.16s set at Melbourne in March this year.

The record, though, would be subject to confirmation by FINA (Federation Internationale de Natation or International Swimming Federation), the world governing body for swimming, Games' organizers said here.

The dramatic day also brought cheers for India with men's sailing team winning gold in Mumbai. India 's medal tally now stands at eight with one gold, one silver and six bronze.

Indian sailing crew of R Mahesh and Giridharilal Yadav finished first with 10.9 points after a total of eight races, ahead of France (19 points) and Spain (25 points) at the Indian Naval Watermanship Training Centre, Colaba, Mumbai.

Pugilist Narjit Singh also assured at least a silver in boxing for India after storming into the final of 54 kg. He defeated Korea Republic's Jang Kwan Sik 18-11 in the semi-final while all his four compatriots lost their respective semi-final bouts.

HK Belwal was outplayed by technically superior Linzhi Gao of China 7-15 in 51 kg. Satya raju was no match to Ramashkevich Yauheni of Belarus in 64 kg losing 5-21, D Bhagyarajan bite the dust against H Rawshan of Uzbekistan in 69kg and Mohinder Thapa was thaashed by Alex Dymakavets 2-18 in 81kg.

The four losers though added four bronze for India.

In volleyball, India showed flashes of brilliance to give a scare to China before losing 22-25, 25-21, 21-25, 18-25 in the four-team men's super league.

With the loss, India are out of contention for gold or silver.

They have to beat Qatar tomorrow to win a bronze.

Indian shooters missed the podium by finishing fifth in men's 25m rapid fire pistol team event. Vijay Kumar, Pemba Tamang, C K Choudhary and S Hambir shot 1730 in best of three aggregates to come fifth. Russia (1752), China (1750) and Korea republic (1735) won gold, silver and bronze respectively.

In handball also, India were beaten 27-35 by Qatar in fifth to eighth classification playoff.

Meanwhile, 32-year-old Yang told reporters that she had no prior international exposure expect having taken part in the earlier Military Games in Catania (Italy) in 2003, though she has qualified for 100m backstroke for next year's Beijing Olympics.

Yang, an army soldier from Shanghai, said she could not believe that she had broken the world record.

''I don't know how I broke the record. It had just happened,'' she said through an interpreter.

When Yang swam to win the 50m backstroke at Gachibowli Swimming Complex ahead of compatriot Xu Tianlongzi ( 29.05s) and Zueva Anastasia of Russia (29.07s), the spectators were stunned after the public address system announced that a world record has been broken.

UNI

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