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Rio Olympics: Hockey Team, Rower Dattu Bhokanal revive India’s hopes

On Day 1 at Rio Olympics 2016 Hockey and Rowing gave hopes to India, despite the defeats suffered by Leander Paes and Sania Mirza

On day 1 at the Rio de Janeiro Olympic games 2016, India had a mixed fortune. While the Indian Hockey team made a good opening at the Rio Olympics, there were a few misses too.

The men’s hockey team marked a narrow win of  3 – 2 against Ireland who made their debut at Rio Olympics 2016. The team led by P.R Sreejesh, began well in the first half and maintained a 2-0 lead by the half time. Ireland fought back with two goals at the second half, but India managed to win. Rupinder Pal Singh and V R Raghunath scored two and one goals respectively for India while Sreejesh made a couple of saves at the back. Raghunath scored in the 15th minute and Rupinder in the 27th and 49th and for Ireland Jermyn John scored in the 45th and Conor Harte in the 56th. India’s next game is against Germany on August 8 and they have to win this game if they want to continue in Rio.

Dattu Baban Bhokanal entered the quarterfinals of Rio by finishing third in his heat in men’s singles sculls rowing competition. This 25-year-old Indian Army personnel finished the 2000-meter race in seven minutes and 21.67 seconds at the Lagoa Stadium and is the only Indian to have qualified for the rowing events. He was in second position for the first 500 meters of the race, but was pushed behind, when Juan Carlos of Mexico in the second lane picked up pace around the 700 m mark.

These wins were the only saving graces as the day marked many flops. As always India had good expectations pinned on its Tennis players. Both in Men’s and Women’s doubles India crashed out in their opening rounds. In women’s doubles, Sania and Prarthana went down fighting to Shuai Peng and Shuai Zhang of China and when it comes to the Men’s doubles Leander Paes and Rohan Bopanna lost to Lukasz Kubot and Marcin Matkowski of Poland.

In shooting, Apurvi Chandela and Ayonika Paul lost in the quarter-finals of the women’s 10 meter air rifle event. Apurvi was at 34th position with a combined score of 411.6 while Ayonika was 43rd with 407.0 among 51 shooters at the Olympic Shooting Center.

On Day 2 at Rio India’s women hockey teams will be back in the Olympic battle ground after 36 years, they will be seen playing against japan in their Rio opening game. Other events on Day 2-shooter Heena Sidhu will be competing at 10 meter air pistol, and a team of Deepika Kumari, Bombayla Devi and Laxmirani Majhi will compete at the women’s re-curve team event.

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