In what has been an enthralling day for Indian athletes at the Tokyo Games, archer Atanu Das stunned two-time Olympic champion Oh Jin Hyek on Thursday to reach the pre-quarter-finals. The Indian archer scored a perfect 10 in a one-arrow shoot-off to knock the 2012 London Olympics gold medallist out in the round of 32.
Besides winning an individual gold medal in London, Oh Jin Hyek was also a bronze medal-winning team member at the 2012 Olympics. What makes Das's win even more remarkable is that his South Korean opponent is already a gold medal winner for the men's team event at the ongoing Tokyo Olympics. Oh Jin Hyek is also a four-time world championship gold medallist in all team events and two-times silver medallist in individual events. The third-seeded veteran is also a former Asian Games gold medallist and won the individual gold at the 2013 World Cup in Paris.
A Nail-biter Encounter
The first set belonged to the Korean, as he took a one-point lead over Atanu Das in the second arrow. In the following two sets, the two archers matched each other's points with a series of 9s. The fourth round was the turning point for Atanu, as Oh Jin Hyek scored a low 7 and 6. The Indian archer did not let the opportunity slip as he scored a perfect ten to clinch the fourth set with a 27-22 margin. The fifth set was a nail-biter. Atanu Das matched Jin Hyek's 10, 9 and 9 scores to take the match to a shootout. The Korean Olympic champion went first and scored a solid 9, only to be stunned by the Indian archer with a perfect 10. Atanu Das's historic 6-5 victory has secured him a position in the pre-quarter-finals, where he will face Japan's, Takaharu Furukawa.
Earlier in the same day, Atanu had defeated Deng Yu-Cheng of Chinese Taipei 6-4 in a thrilling first-round match. Atanu and his wife, the women's world number one, Deepika Kumari, are the two Indians left in the competition, as Deepika Kumari also reached the round of 16 on July 28.
Indian Men's Hockey Team Continues Its Resurgence
An invigorated Indian men's hockey team also secured a quarter-final berth with a comprehensive victory over the defending champions, Argentina. India scored two goals in the final two minutes to win 3-1 in the penultimate group stage match. With this victory, India has consolidated the second position in Pool A, behind Australia. The men in blue have three wins and one loss under their belt as they look forward to their clash against the host Japan in the final pool match on July 30.
PV Sindhu of Badminton and Satish Kumar of Boxing Cruises Into The Quarters
In Badminton, P.V. Sindhu, cruised past tricky rival Mia Blichfeldt with a 21-15, 21-13 victory. With the win, the 29-year-old shuttler, who won a silver in the 2016 Rio Games, secured a place in the quarter-finals of women's singles. On Friday, Sindhu will face the fourth-seeded Akane Yamaguchi of Japan.
In boxing, Satish Kumar (91kg) had an easy win over Jamaica's Ricardo Brown in his Olympic debut match. Despite the split verdict, the 32-year-old two-time Asian Championships bronze medal winner secured his place in the quarter-final stage with a 4-1 win. Satish Kumar will face the reigning world and Asian champion, Uzbekistan's Bakhodir Jalolov.