Asian Games Day 1: Punia Opens India’s Gold Tally

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Asian Games 2018 India Day 1 Highlights:


  • Bajrang Punia won India’s first gold medal at the games
  • He came first in the men’s freestyle wrestling 65 kg category
  • Ravi Kumar and Apurvi Chandela won bronze in the 10m mixed air rifle event
  • Sushil Kumar lost his opening bout in a hock result for the wrestler


Asian Games 2018 India: Indian wrestler Bajrang Punia won gold in the 65kg freestyle wrestling event. Ravi Kumar and Purvi Chandela, the duo won bronze in the 10m air rifle event. Day 1 of the Asian Games 2018 brought good news to the Indian camp.



Kicked off to much fanfare, pomp and festivities, the Asian Games commenced business today with the first day of the much awaited event. Before we dwell further into the day’s proceedings for the country, we bring you the main highlights from an opening ceremony that captivated viewers around the world.


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A colourful display of Indonesia’s heritage and culture kicked off the opening ceremony which was a grand display of color, fireworks and mesmerizing local acts. The ceremony started with the teams walking out to the main stage lead by their flag bearers to huge cheers from the crowd with the loudest reserved for the hosts Indonesia. Neeraj Chopra led the 804 member strong Indian delegation at the opening ceremony. Via Vallen performed the theme song Meraih Bintang after the athletes commenced their match with Indonesian President Joko Widodo following suit to declare the Games open.


Bajrang punia


The inaugural day of the Asian Games did not kick off as India would have imagined with bitter, disappointing news flying in from Jakarta off star wrestler Sushil Kumar losing his opening match. The wrestler who was expected to definitely bag home a medal for the nation went down to Bahrain’s Adam Batirov. A lack of swiftness and agility from the veteran saw him collapse against Baitrov. Kumar’s fortunes of progressing in the event depend on Batirov’s progress now.

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The gloom was quickly lifted though with Bajrang Punia making the entire country proud after winning his 65kg category freestyle wrestling match against Japanese Daichi Takatani 11-8. He opened not only India’s medal tally at the event but also brought in the first coveted gold medal for the country. This was followed by a bronze in shooting for India with the Kumar-Chandela duo winning bronze in the10m mixed air rifle event. The Indian pair scored 429.9 in the final round to finish on the podium with Chinese Taipei winning the gold with a score of 494.1 while China took silver with 492.5. 


During the Asian Games 2018 India almost had a third medal on the day but it was not to be after wrestler Pawan Kumar lost his third-place match against Orgodol 8-1 in the 86kg freestyle wrestling category.


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