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Archers Deepika, Rahul strike gold

October 10, 2010 20:31 IST

Teen sensation Deepika Kumari and Rahul Banerjee won gold medals in individual recurve events on the last day of the archery competition as India's archers ended their campaign on a high note, finishing with three golds one silver and four bronze medals.

On Sunday, the concluding day, at the Yamuna Sports Complex, besides two gold, India also bagged two bronze medals through senior pros Dola Banerjee and Jayanta Talukdar who disappointed with third place finishes.

Earlier, in the morning session, India's 'baby' archer Deepika made a giant leap to stardom, thrashing Olympic bronze medallist Alison Wiliamson 6-0 for the women's recurve individual gold medal.

This was India's second gold in archery after the women's troika of Deepika, Dola and Bombayala Devi Laishram won the gold in the recurve team event.

World Cup final 2007 winner Dola Banerjee faltered in the semis and had to settle for a bronze, but her younger brother, Rahul, made up for the heartbreak, claiming a gold after a thrilling 6-5 win over Jason Lyon in the shoot-off.

Shattering hopes for an all-Indian final, the Canadian beat Indian ace Jayanta Talukdar 6-0 to make it to the final. The Guwahati archer settled for a bronze.

Talukdar beat Australia's three-time Olympian Matthew Gray 6-4 in the third place play-off.

In a thrilling men's recurve final, Banerjee and Lyon shot an identical 27 to tie the first set 1-1.

The Canadian shot 29 with two perfect 10s to take the second set 2-0 with a two-point margin. The third set brought more misery for Banerjee, who shot 28 to lose by one point.

Down 1-5, Banerjee made a spirited comeback, taking the fourth and fifth set for a shoot-off. Cheered by a boisterous crowd, Banerjee shot 9 while the Canadian managed an 8.

Meanwhile, the 17-year-old Ranchi girl Deepika, maintained her composure and defied the breezy conditions in the Eastern fringes of the city to thrash Athens bronze medallist Alison Wiliamson in straight sets (6-0).

Double Olympian and winner of 2007 World Cup finals Dola went down to Williamson 2-6, while Deepika beat Malaysia's Anbarasi Subramaniam 7-1 in the semis.

In the bronze medal play-off, Dola beat Subramaniam of Malaysia 6-2. "The wind was blowing from right to left very strongly, something that did Dola in. I asked Deepika to maintain her cool and not to get disturbed by the wind factor. She did just that. I am so happy for her," women's team coach Poornima Mahato said.

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