Dola crashed out of archery, Indian hope dashed

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{image-dola banerjee_12082008.jpg www.oneindia.com}Beijing, Aug 12: Luck deserted World champion Dola Banerjee and her compatriot Bombayla Devi at crucial moments and the two crashed out losing their opening round matches by a whisker as the Indian challenge in the women's individual round of the Olympic Archery competition ended here today.

Dola lost out to Canada's Marie Pier Beaudet in the tie shoot out, while Bombayla Devi went down to Iwona Marcinkiewicz (Poland) by two points (101-103). The third Indian in the fray Parnitha Vardhineni managed to win a match as she defeated Australia's Jane Waller 106-100 but got knocked out in her second round match as she lost to Un Sil Kwon (North Korea) 106-99.

Dola and Marie were tied at 109 each at the end of the match but in the tie shootout, luck favoured the Canadian who emerged winner 10-8.

''It was a close match, I played well but luck was with my rival, I have no excuse to offer. It was any body's game after it went to shoot out,'' Dola said after the match.

In the first round, both the players had identical score of 29 each, (10,10,9) but in the next, Dola shot a poor 24 (9,7,8), while her rival came up with a total of 26 (9,10,7).

In the third round, the Indian shot 28 (10,9,9) and her opponent 29 (10,10,9). But the last round saw a dramatic turnaround and Dola, who was trailing by three points, came up with a score of 28 (9,9,10), while her rival's form slumped and she could collect only 25 in this series (8, 9, 8) resulting in the tie.

To break the dead lock, tie shootout was applied and Dola, who was given the first strike hit an eight pointer.

Marie seized the chance and shot a perfect ten to seal the match in her favour.

''I could not have done better. I was trailing by three points but recovered in the last series to take the match into the tie shootout,'' said the 28-year-old Dola adding ''I don't think my defeat is an upset, It was a good contest, I am happy with my score. All I can say it was not my day.'' The other Indian to lose narrowly was the 23-year-old Bombayla Devi, who was pitted against Iwona Marcinkiewicz (Poland).

In an absorbing tussle, Iwona took the lead in the first round in which she shot 27 (10,9,8) as against Bombayla Devi's 26 (9,8,9).

Iwona increased her lead by one point in the second round scoring 25 (7, 9, 9), while the Indian shot 24 (9, 9, 6).

Bombayla reduced the gap in the third round in which she shot 27 (9, 9, 9). This turned out to be her best score in the match. The Polish archer collected 26 points (8, 8, 10).

However, in the last round Iwona shot 25 (8, 8, 9) but the Indian, who needed a second successive score of 27, lost concentration at crucial juncture and fired 24 (9, 7, 8) and that dashed her hopes of making it to the next round.

Teenager Pranitha made a good debut in the Olympic as she won a match before losing to an experienced rival.

Against Kwon, Pranitha's score was 27, 22, 24, 26 (99) and against Waller she scored 29, 26, 27, 24 (106).

''It was a good showing,'' said manager KS Kang. ''Dola was just unlucky, while Pranitha won her first match.

''The girls put up their best but that was not enough,'' he added.

UNI

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