Asian Games: Sailing duo in medal contention

Incheon: Indian sailors Varsha Gautham and Aishwarya Nedunchezhiyan placed themselves in medal contention as they occupied fourth with two races to go in the 29er Women's Two Person Dinghy event at the Asian Games here yesterday.

Varsha and Aishwarya finished third and fourth in the ninth and 10th races today to be at fourth with 11th and 12th races to go. In fact, the Indian duo was at second spot after the ninth race today but fell back to fourth after the 10th race.

Meanwhile, 12-year-old Indian sailor Chitresh Tatha occupied fifth with two races to go in the men's Optimist One Person Dinghy event. Chitresh finished fourth in the second race -- 10th of the event -- to pull himself up to the fifth spot.

Only two races remain in the competition. His woman counterpart Ramya Saravanan was at sixth after the 10 races in an ight-competitor field in the women's Optimist One Person Dinghy event.

In women's Laser Radial One Person Dinghy event, Nethra Kumanan was at seventh in the eight competitor field. In J80 Open Match Racing, India were at joint fourth with two other countries on two points after winning two round robin matches and losing three.

Asked about the overall performance of Indian sailors today, team manager Commander K D Singh said, "The 29ers are still in with a chance and this can further improve as the two teams above them have protested against each other on some technicality.

"The outcome will be known only tomorrow which is a day of rest for all our events except match racing that started today. Tomorrow they (match racers) will race again to decide who goes through to the next stage," he said.

"The 11th race will be on September 29 and the 12th and last race on September 30 that will decide the final positions. Today winds were okay, fairly good conditions for sailing."

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