Experienced woman archer Laishram Bombayla Devi advanced to the pre-quarterfinals with couple of wins on what otherwise was another gloomy day for India at the Olympic Games that saw medal hope Jitu Rai crashing out of the 50m pistol qualification.
Apart from the 31-year-old archer’s fine display that saw her fend off challenges posed by rivals from Austria and Chinese Taipei with confidence, there was little else to bring cheer to the Indian contingent with Rai’s early elimination especially discouraging the spirit.
To add to India’s sorrows, the women’s hockey squad also dropped to a 1-6 defeat against Australia, judoka Avtar Singh failed to progress after losing to Refugee Olympic Team’s Misenga Popole in the second round of the men’s 90 kg and weightlifter Satish Sivalingam finished fourth in the men’s 77kg Group B (lower) category.A�The country’s serious wait for their first medal here, thus, continued on day 5 following the exit of Nepal-born Rai, winner of the gold medal in the same 50m pistol event in both the Commonwealth and Asian Games two years ago.
Jitu started the qualification by scoring 91 and then 95 which were followed by scores of 90, 94 and 95, including four 10s in the fifth series, that pushed him to the fourth position at the completion of the series.
The Nepal-born Army man bungled things up completely in the final series that included two eights, which left him way behind in the pecking order.
Not his usual self, a final effort of 10 was not enough for him to avoid elimination in his maiden Olympics. He ended up overall 12th with a total of 554 out of 600. He had finished eighth in the 10m Air Pistol event earlier.
Fellow pistol shooter Prakash Nanjappa performed even more badly to finish 25th out of 41 shooters with 547 in the 50m qualification.
However, encouraging result came from the archery range where Bombayla stormed into the women’s individual pre-quarter finals with successive victories over Laurence Bauldaff of Austria and Chinese Taipei’s Lin Shih-Chi in the elimination phase.
She will aim to make the last eightA�tomorrow.
The experienced archer from Manipur, who finished 24th in the ranking round, dished out a dominating show to get the better off Lin 6-2 in the 1/16 elimination.
Earlier in the 1/32 elimination round, the 31-year-old, in her third Olympics, had rallied her way to beat Baldauff 6-2.
Bombayla, who had lost in the second round of women’s individual recurve event at the London Olympics, outclassed Lin 27-24, 27-24, 26-27, 28-26 to reach the the last 16.