One of the most critical days for India at the Tokyo Olympics was filled with a mix of pride-inducing as well as heartbreaking moments. All the Indian athletes put their best foot forward and gave sports fans across the country multiple moments to rejoice through the course of the day.
The day started with a brilliant Javelin Throw qualification performance by Neeraj Chopra to give India high hopes of a medal in the final event. In the wrestling ring, Deepak Punia and Ravi Dahiya made the country proud by making it to the semi-finals. Even though Deepak lost out on a finals berth, Ravi won a thriller and ensured India of another medal at Tokyo.
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Lovlina Borgohain could not get the better of her opponent to secure a finals berth but made the country proud by winning a Bronze medal. The women's hockey team fought brilliantly against a strong Argentina side, but eventually lost out 2-1. They still hope for bronze.
How did India fare overall on Day 12 at Tokyo?
The Indian contingent had a busy Wednesday with a total of 4 events scheduled for the day, spanning Men's Javelin Throw Qualification, Women's Golf Round 1, Women's Wrestling 57 kg, Men's Wrestling 57 kg & 86 kg, Women's 69 kg boxing semifinal, and Hockey Women's Semi-Final.
Here's a look at how the Indian athletes performed through the course of the day:
Neeraj Chopra throws a stunning 86.65m to qualify for the finals; Shivpal Singh crashes out
India's Javelin Throw medal prospect Neeraj Chopra competed in Group A of the men's Javelin Throw event. In his very first throw, Neeraj Chopra threw as far as 86.65m to comfortably qualify for the medal event. In qualification Group B, India's Shivpal Singh failed to make it count and crashed out of the competition.
Neeraj will feature in the men's final on 7th August at 4:30 pm IST. He will definitely be aiming for Gold after topping the overall qualification table.
Aditi Ashok stars in Women's Golf Round 1, finishes 2nd alongside World #1; Diksha Dagar finishes 56th
Aditi Ashok, ranked 200th in the world, played way beyond what her ranking would otherwise suggest. After a brilliant show, she finds herself right at the top of a star-studded lineup at the end of round 1.
She's presently tied with World #1, Nelly Korda, after the first round. With 3 more rounds to go, it will be interesting to see if Aditi Ashok can keep up her top-notch performance and stun the golf world with an Olympic medal.
Diksha Dagar, on the other hand, only managed to secure 56th place among 60 participants in the same event.
Ravi Kumar Dahiya thrashes his opponents round by round; secures India's 4th medal
Ravi Kumar Dahiya was certainly the star of the day as far as team India is concerned. The wrestler entered the Olympics as an underdog, but managed to put his best foot forward to storm into the finals of the men's 57kg freestyle wrestling event. His composure was tested in the semi-final game, where he was down 9-2 with just 1:30 minutes remaining.
Ravi completely turned it around from there and pinned his opponent to steal the bout from the jaws of defeat. He will now look to carry forward his confidence and fight for Gold for his nation tomorrow against ROC.
Deepak Punia fails to secure a finals berth; to wrestle for Bronze tomorrow
Deepak Punia, yet another underdog in his wrestling category, pulled off some exceptional performances to make his way to the semi-final of the men's 86kg freestyle wrestling event.
Even though he was completely outplayed by DM Taylor III in the semi-finals, his chances of a medal are very much alive. Deepak will now play the winner of the repechage round in the Bronze medal match and hope to secure a podium finish tomorrow.
Anshu Malik loses out in the 1/8 round; will look to respawn through repechage
Anshu Malik fought well in the 57kg women's freestyle wrestling event, but Belaurus' Kurachkina proved to be too difficult an opponent to defeat, as she lost out 8-2.
However, I. Kurachkina eventually made her way to the final of the category, giving Anshu Malik an opportunity to play the repechage rounds and give it her best shot for Bronze. She will be seen in action once again tomorrow.
Lovlina Borgohain fails to reach the finals; wins India's 3rd Olympic Boxing Bronze medal
Lovlina Borgohain fought brilliantly throughout the course of the competition in the women's 69kg boxing category. She stormed her way through to the semi-finals last week, and had a good break to prepare for the all-important semi-final clash in her debut olympics.
However, Turkey's Surmeneli proved to be too good for her, and Lovlina eventually lost 5-0. Even though she couldn't make it to the Gold medal bout, she will certainly be proud of having secured a Bronze medal for her country.
Indian women's hockey team loses to Argentina 2-1; to face Britain for Bronze
The Indian women's hockey team did the entire country proud by showing brilliant fighting spirit against a top-ranked side like Argentina in the all-important semi-final clash at the Tokyo Olympics.
However, Argentina's attack and passing proved to be too good for the Indians to handle, and they eventually weren't able to make it to their first ever Olympic final. The Indian women will now look for a podium finish, as they face off against Great Britain in the Bronze medal game on Friday.
Medal Tally and Standings after Day 11, 3rd August
With 3 medals in the bag, India is currently placed 65th in the Olympic medal tally. China leads the pack with 70 medals, including 32 Golds. The USA closely follows with 25 Golds and a total of 78 medals.
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