The Indian rowing contingent might return home content with the knowledge that it bettered the mark set in the last edition, this time around. Indian rowers had signed off with three medals in Jakarta, but have notched up five podium finishes at the Asian Games 2023 in Hangzhou. They, however, might rue the fact that they could not eke out a gold medal this time - a feat that the contingent had achieved at the 2018 Asiad. (Medal Tally | Schedule | Full Coverage | Sports News)
In terms of overall standings, India ended its campaign in fifth position, which is one better than its performance at the Jakarta edition, which had resulted in one gold and two bronze medals.
As expected, hosts China finished on top of the chart with 11 gold and two silver. Uzbekistan came in second with two gold, four silver and one bronze.
On Monday morning, the Indian quartet of Jaswinder Singh, Bheem Singh, Punit Kumar and Ashish Goliyan narrowly missed a silver medal in the men's four event.
The men's quadruple sculls team comprising Parminder Singh, Satnam Singh, Jakar Khan and Sukhmeet Singh later finished third on the podium with a timing of 6:08.61 seconds, behind Uzbekistan (6:04.64) and gold medallists China (6:02.65).
The quadruple skulls quartet staged a comeback in the final 500 metres, moving from fourth place to third in the home stretch.
There was another resurgent display in the men's four event too, as the Indian team, after being placed for the majority of the race, coordinated well to finish third with 6:10.81s. But they were left ruing the opportunity of bagging a silver and upstaging favourites China, who beat the Indians by less than a second. Uzbekistan took the top spot in the podium with a timing of 6:04.96.
In the men's singles sculls, Indian rower Balraj Panwar missed out on a maiden Asian Games medal, finishing fourth. The 24-year-old from Karnal, who was among the top-three at the 1500-mark, faltered in the final 500m to slip to fourth place with a timing of 7:08.79s.
5️⃣th Medal for 🇮🇳 in Rowing— SAI Media (@Media_SAI) September 25, 2023
In the Men's Quadruple Sculls event, the Indian boat, represented by the stellar team of Satnam Singh, Parminder Singh, Sukhmeet, and Jakar Khan, clinched the 🥉 with a superb timing of 6:08:61⏰
Let's cheer for these incredible athletes as they… pic.twitter.com/BBLdiopVyv
Balraj finished less than nine seconds behind Hong Kong's Hin Chun Chiu who took the bronze medal (7:00.55). China's Liang Zang won the gold with 6:57.06, while Japan's Ryuta Arakawa (6:59.79) and Hong Kong's Hin Chun Chiu ended up with silver and bronze respectively.
India's women rowers could not perform to expectations, as they ended up in the last place the women's eight with a timing of 7:05.71s, way behind China who took the gold medal clocking 6:33.61.
The Indian bunch of Varsha Kattathara, Aswathi Padinjarayil, Mrunmayee Salgaonkar, Sonali Swain, Ritu Kaudi, Priya Devi Thangjam, Tendenthoi Devi Haobijam, Rukmani and Geetanjali Gurugubelli could not pose any challenge to their opponents. The fourth-placed Thailand too finished more than 15 seconds ahead of the Indian team.