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After losing focus, Vakil Raj Dindor returns to bag gold

Both the archers were tied 5-5 after five sets in the men’s recurve final of the Nationals at the JLN Stadium.

For Vakil Raj Dindor, 22, Sunday was the biggest day of his career as a recurve archer. Minutes after he edged Petroleum Sports Promotion Board and India team regular Atanu Das by a matter of millimetres to win gold, he was the centre of attraction.

Both the archers were tied 5-5 after five sets in the men’s recurve final of the National Archery Championship at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium. In the tie-breaker both Vakil and Atanu shot 8, but Vakil was adjudged the winner as his arrow was the closest to the centre of the target face.

Vakil, who is a sepoy and posted with the Army Sports Institute (ASI) in Pune, had never come close to a podium finish. His best show before Sunday was a lowly 35th in four previous appearances. “I never thought I will reach the final, let alone winning it. So I was only trying to shoot well. I did commit mistakes but I was lucky others around me did too. But I am very happy as this is my first medal at the Nationals,” Vakil said.

The result was also important, he adds, after he had lost focus last year following the demise of his mother.

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“I lost my bearings after my mother expired. Samjh me nahi aa raha tha kya karna hai,” recalls Vakil, who hails from Napla village in Banswada, Rajasthan.

But things have changed since last year after he joined the army, where apart from the training he was provided with better equipment.

Bombayla aces it

The women’s individual final was also decided through a tie-breaker. Railways Laishram Bombayla Devi defeated teammate Rimil Biruily 10-9 to break the deadlock. Bombayla had slipped 5-1 in the first three sets of the final but recovered to make it 5-5. Assam’s Satbir Kaur defeated Komal Sharma 7-1 to finish third.

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Ace archer Deepika Kumari had to be content with a team gold after failing to make the podium in the individual event. Deepika led the Jharkhand team to a 5-1 win over RSPB. Punjab finished third. The men’s team event was won by the Jharkhand, which beat Uttar Pradesh 6-2.

First published on: 20-10-2014 at 12:52:18 am
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