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India at Tokyo Olympics, Day 2 News Round-up: Manu Bhaker’s Trigger Malfunctions; Manika Batra, PV Sindhu Win and More

Tokyo Olympics Day 2 India News Round-up
Manika Batra at Tokyo Olympics table tennis event

Manika Batra in action against Ukraine’s Margaryta Pesotska at the Tokyo Olympics on Sunday.

Indians began Day 2 of Tokyo Olympics on a disappointing note with bad luck -- a trigger malfunction while in competition -- jeopardizing Manu Bhaker’s qualifying round in the women’s 10 metre air pistol on Sunday, July 25.

As the day progressed, there were good news from the badminton and boxing arena -- PV Sindhu and Mary Kom winning their openers with ease. 

Click | For More Coverage of the Tokyo Olympics From Newsclick Sports

Here is a round-up of how the Indian athletes fared on Day 2 of the Olympic Games in Tokyo.

Batra Wins, Sathiyan Out

Manika Batra made a stunning comeback against World No. 32 Margaryta Pesotska or Ukraine to reach the table tennis women's singles third round but G Sathiyan succumbed to the pressure on his Olympic debut to exit the men's singles competition.

Sathiyan, seeded 26th, was expected to beat World No. 94, Hong Kong's Siu Hang Lam, in his second round match after getting a first round bye, Batra, started as the underdog.

Batra, ranked 62, made a remarkable comeback after losing the first two games to prevail 4-11, 4-11, 11-7, 12-10, 8-11, 11-5, 11-7 in the second round match that lasted 57 minutes. She meets Austria's Sofia Polcanova on Monday for a place in the round of 16.

Angad in Race for Final

Angad Vir Singh Bajwa missed two targets out of 75, to be placed 11th on countback in the men's skeet event and has a top-six finals spot well in sight. Competing at the Asaka Shooting range, Angad had scores of 25,24,24 in the first three series and will come back on Monday to shoot the final two series in qualifying.

Also Read | Brawler to Artful Dodger, the Evolution of Mary Kom is Complete

Compatriot Mairaj Ahmad Khan shot 71 to be placed 25th out of the 30 shooters in the fray. Men's skeet is the only event with Indian interest in shooting in the Tokyo Olympics on Monday and the finals are scheduled for 12.20 pm IST.

Australia Hammer India

The Indian men's hockey team was drubbed 1-7 by Australia in their second Pool A match. The loss, a morale-shattering one, has exposed quite a lot of chinks in the side's armour.

The mighty Kookaburras toyed with the Indian defence after the first quarter to comfortably secure their second consecutive win in the competition. 

Australia looked dominant and were in complete control from the onset, scoring goals through Daniel Beale (10th minute), Joshua Beltz (26th), Andrew Flynn Ogilvie (23rd), Jeremy Hayward (21st), Blake Govers (40th, 42nd) and Tim Brand (51st) to secure the easy win.

India's lone goal came from the stick of Dilpreet Singh in the 34th minute.

Rowers Reach semis

Arjun Lal Jat and Arvind Singh qualified for the men's lightweight double sculls rowing semifinals after finishing third in the repechage round here.

The Indian duo clocked 6:51.36 to finish third at the Sea Forest Waterway.

Also Read | Saturday High to Sunday Low: Australia Serve India a Seven Goal Reality Check 

"We followed exactly whatever had been told to us by our coach. The coach told us that we should try to get the best position for India.

"It's (rowing) not a very popular sport in India. So our coach told us that getting to the semifinals is also a big motivation for us, and we had to do our best," the duo said.

Arjun plays role of the bower while Arvind is the team's stroker. The two had finished fifth in the heats on Saturday.

Sania-Raina Crash Out

Sania Mirza and Ankita Raina were knocked out despite dominating a large part of their women's doubles opener against Ukrainian twin sisters Nadiia and Liudmyla Kichenok.

Sania and Raina were running away with the contest at one point. However, their opponents forced a dramatic turnaround to pull off a 0-6, 7-6 (0), 10-8 win on court 11 ofthe  Ariake Tennis Centre.

Sania was serving for the match at 5-3 in the second set but perhaps nerves got the better of her and ended up dropping her serve. From then on, it was not the same match.

Sania and Raina were down 1-8 in the Super Tie break of the third set, but reeled off seven straight points to make it 8-8. They, however, lost the next two points to crash out.

Bhaker Fails to Make Final

A "circuit malfunction" in her pistol cost Manu Bhaker dearly as she missed out on qualifying for the final of the women's 10m air pistol event.

Also Read | Bad Luck, Poor Form or Lack of Edge? The Case of the Missing Indian Shooting Stars in Tokyo 

Bhaker lost more than five minutes due to the technical snag, enough to disturb her rhythm in the precision sport. She had made a steady start in her maiden Olympic appearance, before the snag appeared. 

Her father Ramkishan Bhaker, as well as a National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) official, said that the electronic trigger of Manu's pistol had "suffered a circuit malfunction" in the middle of the second series of shots during qualification.

Bhaker returned to the firing point after getting the issue fixed but, by then, it had disturbed her momentum. She was unable to catch up against a world-class field.

Bhaker finished 12th with a total score of 575 while Yashaswini Singh Deswal ended 13th with 574. The cut-off was 577.

Meanwhile, Deepak Kumar and Divyansh Singh Panwar finished 26th and 32nd, respectively, in the men's 10m air rifle event, failing to recover from a poor start in the qualifications.

Sindhu Opens With Easy Win

Reigning world champion PV Sindhu opened her campaign with an easy straight-games win over Israel's Ksenia Polikarpova in the women's singles group J match.

The 26-year-old, seeded sixth, beat the 58th ranked Polikarpova 21-7, 21-10 in a lop-sided match. The World No. 7 Indian will next play Hong Kong's World No. 34 Cheung Ngan Yi in the group stage.

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