Anjali disappoints, Tombi Devi exits as India begin poorly in the Olympics (India Lead)

August 9th, 2008 - 12:47 pm ICT by IANS  

By V. Krishnaswamy
Beijing, Aug 9 (IANS) India’s Olympic campaign got off to a dismal start as shooters Anjali Bhagwat and Avneet Singh and judoka Khumujam Tombi Devi bowed out of contention in the preliminary stage on the opening day of competition here Saturday. Seasoned Woman shooter Anjali belied hopes of a good showing as she finished way behind at 29th in the 10-metre air rifle event managing a total score of 393 at the Beijing Shooting Range Hall here Saturday.

Anjali started off well with two series of 99 and 99 but then lost the momentum, firing five wayward shots in the last two series of the qualification round where she carded 97 and 98.

The other Indian in the event Avneet Sidhu fared more miserably and took the 39th spot.

Avneet, participating in her maiden Olympic Games, totalled 389 points.

Avneet had a perfect score of 100 in the second series after carding 98 in the first, but her last two sets of 96 and 95 were far behind the top shooters in the category.

India’s poor performance stretched to women’s judo, where Manipur’s Tombi Devi made an opening round exit in the 48 kilogram class. Tombi could not stand up to the skill and reflexes of Ana Hormigo of Portugal and went out virtually without a fight before a sparse crowd at the USTB gymnasium.

The disappointing show of the country’s participants came a day after the controversy triggered by the casual attire of some women competitors at the spectacular opening ceremony.

While Sania Mirza and Sunitha Rao wore their practice outfits, Neha Aggarwal put on a green sari, giving a shabby look to the contingent which marched past at the packed National Stadium Friday night before a gathering of world leaders.

Indians will take part in six more events later Saturday - archery, badminton, boxing, rowing, swimming, sailing and badminton. Two more Indian shooters Manavjit Singh Sandhu and Mansher Singh are participating in the clay pigeon trap event.

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