Tuesday, Oct 01, 2002
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The win came about in adverse conditions as the Indian team was left without the services of its chief coach, Stephen Constantine, who was forced to sit out the match after being penalised by the AFC Technical Committee for his intemperate behaviour against the referee soon after India had blanked Bangladesh 3-0 for its first win on Friday last.
The team, as it took the field seemed shocked by the sudden turn of events, and was listless before Turkmenistan took the lead through a Vladimir Bayramov header off a flag-kick taken by Didarklych Urazov. Bhaichung Bhutia had just one shot at the goal and equally disappointing was the failure of Abhishek Yadav and Jo Paul Ancheri to make use of the opportunities that came their way.
However, as the game resumed after the interval, the Indians, like wounded tigers on the prowl, bounced back brilliantly and took the lead with two goals within a space of as many minutes. A Samir Naik throw-in saw Debjit Ghosh and Ancheri fail to connect and the ball being palmed away by goalkeeper Pavel Harchik. Abhishek, who moved in quickly, was also pinned down by a rival defender and as it looked that the chance was all set to go abegging came Bhutia, from nowhere, to connect a brilliant volley.
Bouyed by this success, the Indian attacking with confidence and determination took the lead in the 56th minute as Bhutia opened up an opportunity for Abhishek to score. The third goal for the Indians, who by then had established complete control, came through Bhutia once again as played around the legs of Bairam Meredor and placed the ball beyond the reach of Harchik with a superb right footer.
India with this win has chances to qualify for the quarterfinals even its loses against China in its final match.
In squash, India's visions of a medal remained alive as Vaidehi Reddy and Joshna Chinnappa moved into the quarterfinals of the women's singles event. In the round of last 16, Vaidehi surprised eighth seeded Chinantsu Matsui (Japan) 9-6, 7-9, 9-7, 9-6 in a hard-fought encounter while Joshna scalped South Korea's Park Eun-Ok 3-9, 9-7, 10-8, 9-2.
Vaidehi will meet South Korea's Lee Hai-Kyung in the next round while Joshna will take on Malaysia's Sharon Wee Lin. A win in this round is sure to ensure the Indians a medal.
In the men's section, the Indian challenge, however, met with a setback as Saurav Ghosal lost to Qatar's Saoud Mohammed Al Sulaiti 9-3, 6-9, 6-9, 8-10 in the pre-quarterfinals.
In rowing, none of the Indian teams seen in action today made it into the finals directly. They will now compete in the repechage races. Those who qualified for the repechage included Manjula Raj in the single sculls, Gurpreet Kaur in the light weight single sculls and the men's light weight coxless four team of Mujeeb Rehman, Ratheesh Kumar, Saji Thomas and Kasam Khan.
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