There was no stopping the Indian boxers' victory march at the Commonwealth Games Asian gold medallist Suranjoy Singh (52kg) andAmandeep Singh (49kg) advanced to the quarter-finals, while defending champion Akhil Kumar (56kg) booked a place in the last-16 stage in front of a rapturous home crowd at the Talkatora stadium on Thursday. On yet another day of dominance by India's boxers, a packed audience at the dome-shaped arena was treated to some flamboyance by Akhil, tactful boxing by Amandeep and loads of energy by Suranjoy. Akhil blanked Pakistan's Qadir Khan 7-0 to start his title defence on a perfect note even as Amandeep dug deep from his experience to notch a hard-fought 4-0 triumph over Rwanda's Haziza Matusi.
Clarke, Pearson Games fastest athletes
Jamaican Leron Clarke emerged the fastest man of the Commonwealth Games, clocking the second quickest time of 10.12s on Indian soil, while Australia's Sally Pearson won the women's 100m dash in 11.28 seconds on Thursday. Englishman Mark Lewis Francis, who won a silver in the European Championships, was second with a timing of 10.2s while Trinidad and Tobago's Aaron Armstrong was third with 10. 24s. Pearson was in contention for gold after the disqualification of England's Laura Turner, who had the best time this season among the eight finalists, following a false start. In a depleted field, marred by a slew of star pull-outs, she was trailing Nigeria's Osayemi Oludamola (11.32s) but made up near the end to finish four-hundreth of a second ahead of her the Nigerian. Natasha Mayers of St Vincent and Grenedians won the bronze in 11.37s. Pearsons's timing is also the third slowest in the Commonwealth Games history after the 10.27secs in both 1970 and 1974.
Australia whip India in men's hockey
Australia proved too good for India in the men's hockey tournament. The World champions thrashed the hosts 5-2 in a Pool A match and took a step closer to the semi-finals.
Desmond Abbott (2nd minute), Trent Mitton (6th), Eddie Ockenden (48th), Liam de Young (54th) and Glenn Turner (58th) scored for Australia while Dharamvir Singh (12th) and Sandeep Singh were India's goal-getters.
Paes-Sania crash out
There was disappointment on the tennis courts too as Leander Paes and Sania Mirza were beaten in the mixed doubles. Paes had earlier in the day entered the semi-finals of the men's doubles, partnering Mahesh Bhupathi, while Sania had made the semi-finals of the women's singles. Sania joined Somdev Devvarman in the semi-final round. The Indian ace easily won the women's singles quarter-final, disposing off Australia's Marina Erakovic 6-2, 6-3. Somdev had earlier beaten sixth seed Rubin Statham of New Zealand 6-3, 6-4 to make the grade in the men's singles.
Ashish Kumar wins India's first gymnastics medal
History was made on Thursday when Ashish Kumar clinched the bronze medal in the men's floor exercise to earn India its first Commonwealth gymnastics medal. It is the country's first medal in gymnastics since the beginning of the Commonwealth Games in 1930. The crowd roared as the 19-year old lad scored an impressive 14.475 points to snatch the bronze medal. Australia's Thomas Pichler bagged won the gold with 14.675 points and England's Reiss Beckford took the silver, scoring 14.625.
Geeta wins first ever gold in women's wrestling
Haryana's Geeta won India's first ever gold medal in women's wrestling, in the 55kg freestyle category. The hosts also got a silver in the 48 kg freestyle category after Nirmala Devi lost her title round bout to Canadian opponent Carol Huynh. Suman Kundu got India a third medal from the competition winning the bronze medal play-off in the 63 kg category.
Indian women paddlers in final
The fourth seeded Indian women's team breezed into the final of the Commonwealth Games' table tennis competition, spanking third seeds England 3-0 at Yamuna Sports Complex on Thursday. Former National champion Kumaresan Shamini overcame some early challenges before beating Kelly Sibley 3-1 to give the hosts a winning start before an almost full gallery. Bengal paddler Mouma Das and reigning national champion Poulomi Ghatak then came out with sizzling forms to beat Joanna Parker and Hannah Hicks respectively with an identical 3-0 scoreline and clinched the issue. In final, the Indians will take on top seed Singapore, who eased past Malaysia 3-0 in the other semi-final earlier in the day.
Indian women, who got bronze in Melbourne Games in 2006, had on Wednesday overcome third seed Australia 3-1 in the quarter-final.
Seven Indian swimmers advance to semis
Sandeep Sejwal advanced to the semi-finals with an impressive fourth place finish even as six other Indian swimmers made the cut in their respective events on Thursday, to boost India's medals hopes in the pool. A day after Prasanta Karmakar made history by bagging bronze, the first medal in swimming, Kiran Tak and Anjani Patel kept the medal hopes alive as the duo progressed into the final in the para sport category. Tak (1:27.02) and Anjani (1:46.68) finished seventh and eighth respectively in the preliminary rounds of the freesyle S9 category and the duo's fate will be decided in the final clash later in the evening.
Earlier, Sejwal gave a perfect start to Indian onslaught even though he finished a few seconds behind topper Glenn Snyders (New Zealand) in the men's 50m breaststroke to make the cut with a fourth place.
Agnishwar Jayaprakash (29.66) became the second Indian to qualify in the same event as he took the 11th place. The duo will now compete in the evening semis.
Badrinath Melkote clocked 59.03 in the men's 100m backstroke to edge out Beijing Olympian Rehan Poncha (4:44.95s) and Merwyn Chen (4:51.33) and earn a last-four place.
Poncha and Chen took the last two places in a field of 14 as the duo failed to make the final in the men's 100m back.
India's biggest hope Virdhawal Khade swam 55.17 in the men's 100m butterfly for a lowly 13th place but that was enough to see him through to the semis.
Dope-tainted Jyotsna Pansare, who was inducted into the side at last minute after NADA lifted the suspension on her, was eliminated from the women's 50m backstroke while her teammate Fariha Zaman (31.34) advanced with a 15th place finish. Jyotsna finished 18th in 31.95.Talasha Prabhu missed out a semi-final berth in the women's 50m freestyle by fraction of seconds. She clocked 27.68 to finish 16th to see her campaign end. In the women's 100m freestyle, Poorva Shetye (1:20.79) had to exit the event after finishing 22nd.
Third consecutive loss for India netball team
Little known Trinidad and Tobago on Thursday handed India their third consecutive defeat in the netball event at the Commonwealth Games in New Delhi. The home team's nightmare on the court continued as they tamely surrendered 26-77 to the aggressive Caribbeans at the Thyagaraj Sports Complex. The Indian attack, which has managed just 70 goals in three games so far, contributed to the loss.
The defence, however, showed some signs of improvement and conceded 77 goals, five fewer than Wednesday's match against Malawi. India next face Samoa and Jamaica in their remaining group A matches and, with the kind of form both these teams have shown in the tournament, it is highly unlikely that the hosts will register even a consolation win.
Indian shuttlers in semis
Ace Indian shuttlers Chetan Anand and Saina Nehwal notched contrasting victories as India thrashed Canada 3-0 to set up a semi-final clash with England in the mixed badminton team event at the Commonwealth Games on Thursday. The mixed doubles pair of Jwala Gutta and V Diju just took 19 minutes to make short work of N G Toby and Gao Grace, winning 21-8, 21-12 in the first match of the day to give India a 1-0 lead.
Chetan, however, had a difficult time getting past David Snider. After a roller-coaster first game, he led 15-6 in the second before the Canadian fought back by taking 10 straight points to take 16-15 lead. However, the Indian kept his cool to reel off the next few points and emerge victorious. Saina then sealed the issue with a 21-16, 21-13 victory over her one-time doubles partner Anna Rice in the women's singles
Athletes Jhuma, Hari Shankar in finals
Jhuma Khatun clocked her personal best to qualify for the women's 1500m final while compatriot Sushma Devi fell by the wayside after a disappointing performance, at the Commonwealth Games on Thursday. Jhuma bettered her personal best of 4:14.32s which she set in July, to finish sixth in women's 1500m heat one. Sushma clocked 4:22.05s, way below her personal best of 4:13.22s and season's best of 4:14.06s, to finish seventh in the second heat and crashed out of the competition. Kenyan Olympic champion Nancy Jebet Langat won one of the heats with a timing 4:13.62s, much below her season's and personal best of 4:00.13s.
Another Kenyan athlete, who won the second heat, led the time charts today with an effort of 4:08.76s. In men's high jump, both national record holder Hari Shankar Roy and and Nikhil Chittarasu qualified for the finals with identical efforts of 2.16m. Roy equalled his season's best effort although he was way below his personal best of 2.25m which he did six years ago. For Nikhil also, it was the season's best effort. In men's 400m race, India's lone participant Harpreet Singh failed to qualify for the semi-finals after finishing fifth in one of the heats with a timing of 48.29s. Conrad Williams of England topped the chart clocking the best time of 45.78 followed by Mark Kiprotich Muttai of Kenya (45.90sec) in the event rendered second grade with several athletes from Jamaica, England and Australia skipping it.
Shooters Vijay-Gurpreet bag 12th gold for India
The Indian shooters started off in fine fashion on Thursday, with Vijay Kumar and Gurpreet Singh winning a gold medal in the Pairs 25 metres Rapid Fire pistol event. The duo created a new Games record with a final total of 1162, as they each shot 293 in the second stage, at the Dr Karni Singh Shooting Range. Malaysia's Hafiz Adzha and Hasli Izwan took the silver with a tally of 1144, with Australia settling for bronze, scoring 1125.
This is the sixth gold medal for India in the shooting event, taking their tally to 12 gold medals in the Delhi Games. However, there was a bit of disappointment for India as crowd favourite Tejaswini Sawant failed to qualify for the finals in the women's 50 metres Rifle-3 Positions. Sawant missed out after she finished ninth with a total score of 568. Lajjakumar Gauswami, though, kept India's hopes of winning a medal in that category as she finished sixth in the qualifications with a tally of 570.
Women archers win bronze in team event
The Indian women's archery team beat Malaysia to win bronze in the team event on the fourth day of the 19th Commonwealth Games in New Delhi on Thursday.The team comprised of Bheigyabati Chanu, Jhano Hansdah and Gagandeep Kaur. Earlier on Wednesday, the Indian women archers pulled off an upset in the Commonwealth Games team compound section when they beat favourites Australia by 227-220, and made the semi-finals at the Yamuna Sports Complex.