PANAJI: Hosts Goa had a lot to cheer for on the day the 37th National Games were officially inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi as their Modern Pentathlon contingent clinched a gold, silver and bronze medal and a silver and two bronze from Pencak Silat on Thursday.
Babu Gaonkar, a 22-year-old tribal from Netravali village in Sanguem, clinched the gold medal in the Men’s Laser Run category with a timing of 12:26.27 sec to kick off the proceedings in Ponda.
This was Goa’s first medal of the Games after coming close on a couple of occasions. The son of a tractor mechanic then teamed up with Seeta Gosavi to bag the mixed relay silver and the women’s laser run team won the bronze medal.
In the mixed team relay, Gaonkar and Gosavi set a timing of 16:01.50 to finish behind Anju and Ravi of Haryana, who clocked a time of 15:23.91.
In the women’s laser run, Madhya Pradesh bagged the gold while Maharashtra clinched silver.
Pencak silat players then ended the day on a high with Prajakta Bhekane and Madhu Chauhan winning the silver medal in Artistic Ganda Female category. Haryana’s Simran and Sonia won the gold while Manipur’s Thokchom Chanu and Thingbaijam Chanu took the bronze.
Ajay Dole and Gautam Ram added a bronze medal to Goa’s tally in Artistic Ganda Male category while VIlton DCruz also stood on the podium in Artistic Solo men event.
There was good news for Goa from the Netball arena as well with their men’s team registering a second successive win in Fast5 category to assure themselves a semi-final spot.
In the opening Pool A match, Goa defeated Uttar Pradesh 33-20 and then got the better of Rajasthan 40-28.
The women’s team, however, was knocked out after losing to Himachal Pradesh 24-15 and Kerala 26-24.