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Asian Track Cycling: No medal for India but Ronaldo Singh reaches semis in Sprint
New Delhi, June 21 - It turned out to be a disappointing day for India at the Asian Track Cycling Championships here on Tuesday as the hosts failed to win a single medal on a day that saw junior cyclist Himanshi Singh being disqualified after finishing second in her event.
However, there was a silver lining for India as star rider Ronaldo Singh made it to the semifinals in his pet event, setting up himself for making it to one of the 10 finals to be held on the final day on Wednesday.
Japan lead the combined tally in the 41st Senior, 28th Junior and 10th Para Asian Track Cycling Championships with 19 medals including 11 gold. They have six silver and two bronze medals. Though South Korea have won more medals (21), they are second in the standings with 10 gold.
Hosts India are in the fifth position with 20 medals -- 2 gold, 5 silver and 13 bronze.
Six finals were conducted on Tuesday and though India could not win any medal at the end of the fourth day of the event, the Indian cyclists won hearts by giving their best-ever performances.
Harashveer Singh Sekhon gave a good fight to the Korean (Euro Kim) and Japanese (Naoki Kojima) riders in the 30,000m Points race. In this power event, peddlers have to show their endurance and sprint performance where peddlers have to go for sprints with full energy after every 10 laps in the total 120 laps race.
Sekhon was in the leading bunch and peddling neck-and-neck with opponents but eventually finished a creditable fourth with 43 points -- ending behind South Korea (61 points) and Japan (60 points) riders. Hammadi Al Mirza secured gold in this event with 69 points.
Ronaldo Singh won his quarterfinal in the Men's Sprint event and advanced to the semifinal where he will challenge Andrey Chugay of Kazakhstan. Ronaldo clocked 10.394s (69.27km/h) and 10.234s (70.353 km/h) respectively to defeat Jee One Park of South Korea in two sprints.
"Tomorrow is a big day for me as I will perform in one of my favourite events, I'm ready to give my personal best to earn the medal for India. This will also show me my preparedness for the upcoming Commonwealth Games," said Ronaldo, who will fight for a medal on Wednesday.
The day, however, did not start on a good note for the Indian team.
Junior cyclist Himanshi Singh earned second place in the 7.5km Scratch race but was later disqualified on the ground of dangerous riding. She was blocked behind the Malaysian rider and in an attempt to go ahead of the Malaysian and Japanese rider, she made a technical fault and was disqualified by the Commissionaire.
The gold was won by Ci Hui Nyo of Malaysia ahead of Japan's Mizuki Ikeda and Sofiya Karimova of Uzbekistan.
"I had no other option as I was blocked by the riders; you have to learn from every mistake and I will work on my techniques to handle such types of situations in the future," said a disappointed Himanshi.
Star Rider Esow once again failed to win his quarterfinal event of Men Sprint. He lost to Andrey Chugay of Kazakhstan. Esow finished his campaign empty-handed in this tournament.--IANS
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