By Rajinder Pal Devgan
Hangzhou, 2 Dec: It was a proud day for Raja Randhir Singh to watch his daughter, Rajeshwari Kumari, win a Silver Medal in Women’s Trap team Event at the 19th Asian Games here.
The ever popular OCA President was delighted even more because Rajeshwari is a fourth generation winner from the Patiala family. Randhir Singh had himself won a gold medal in Individual Trap at the Bangkok Asian Games.
The race for the Silver Medal was too close for comfort. It was going to be a difference of a point. Reah that is Rajeshwari kept her nerve and shot a very creditable 24 out of 25 clay birds. A truly remarkable achievement considering she had fever a day before.
This is the first time Indian women shooters have won a Silver Medal in Trap.
It was a great emotional moment for me too having known Rajeshwari from the day she was born.
The Men’ Trap Team went a step farther to win the Gold Medal.
Kynan C shot well to win an individual Bronze Medal to take the tally to 3 medals in the Trap Events.
We moved on to the Athletics Stadium 40 minutes away from the Ranges soon after a very emotional Medal Ceremony. I was pleasantly surprised to have the company of no other than the legendary PT Usha there. She is at present the President of the IOA with 104 international medals to her credit. Truly a GOAT.
Her presence I guess inspired the Indian athletes and there was a flow of medals.
Silver, Bronze in 10,000 metres for men; Gold in Shotput and a Gold in Steeplechase.
The 100 metres Hurdles started on a sour note. There was a false start. A Chinese athlete was the guilty one but to everyone’s surprise, the Indian athlete was sought to be disqualified, too. The race was held up, discussions were held and, of all things, the two thought to be guilty of a false start were allowed to run!
It turned out to be an exciting race with the two false starters, the Chinese and the Indian finishing 2nd and 3rd, respectively. Then came another shocker for the Chinese girl. She was disqualified and the Indian girl awarded the Silver Medal.
End of the day it was a good day for the Indians as far as the Medals were concerned.
(RP Devgan is an Educator and Sportsman.)