Panaji, October 24: Services Sports Promotion Board and West Bengal expectedly bagged the men's and women's artistic team gold medals on the opening day of the gymnastics competition in the 37th National Games at the Peddem Indoor Sports Complex on Monday.

The Services team comprising Abhijeet Kumar, Anas Ali Shaikh, Gaurav Kumar, Rakesh Kumar Patra, Saif Sadik Tamboli and Tapeswaranath Das scored a total of 249.35 points, over seven points better than second-placed Uttar Pradesh (242.10). Haryana bagged the bronze medal with a combined score of 240.35. National Games: Rhythmic Gymnast Sanyukta Kale Chases Multiple Gold Medals.

Later in the day, West Bengal once again proved that they are the leaders in artistic gymnastics in women as they scored a total of 175.90 points to grab the state's first gold in the Games. Maharashtra took the silver medal with a total of 166.95 while Uttar Pradesh were third with 142.30 points, having a point deducted from the overall score.

With the official inauguration of the Games still a few days away, four gold medals have been decided so far with Karnataka (men's team badminton) and Assam (women's team badminton) sharing the other two. Five more gold medals on offer on Tuesday in individual badminton events at the Dr Shyama Prasad Mukherjee complex.

Former men's singles champion Sourabh Varma of Madhya Pradesh will look to add another gold to his tally after getting the better of Maharashtra's Harsheel Dani 19-21, 21-14, 21-17 in the semi-finals on Monday. It was Dani who started strong opening up a sizeable lead in the opening game but Varma clawed back with his trademark tenacity. However, the Maharashtra shuttler did find another gear to close the game.

The second game was a much closer affair till Dani slipped while going for a tap and seemed to have strained his right knee. It took time for him to once again find his rhythm and Varma pounced on the opportunity like only he can.

He took the second game rather easily and had opened up a 15-5 lead in the decider. Even a late fightback wasn't enough for Dani to turn things around and Varma closed the 57-minute encounter on his second match point.

The 30-year-old will now face Telangana's M Tharun, who got the better of second seed M Mithun 12-21, 21-14, 22-20 in an hour and seven minutes.

In the women's singles semifinals, Uttarakhand's Aditi Bhatt saved two match points in the second game to beat M Meghana Reddy of Telangana 7-21, 24-22, 21-16. She will now face national champion Anupama Upadhayaya of Haryana, who packed off top seed Aakarshi Kashyap of Chattisgarh 21-13, 21-17. National Games Round-up: Maharashtra's Dani Upsets Top Seed Kiran George in Badminton.

In the basketball competition that started on Monday at the Manohar Parikar stadium in Navelim, favourites Punjab men rode on a strong performance from Kanwar Gurbaz Sandhu (22 points) and Prince Pal Singh (19 points) to defeat Telangana 87-57 in their opening Pool A clash. Nathan Abraham Billa top-scored for Telangana with 21 points.

Punjab, who won the silver medal last year in Gujarat, boasts of many internationals including Amjyot Singh and Amritpal Singh and was keen to assert their domination from the start.

"We knew that Telangana is a strong team and we had a clear game plan against them. Our aim is to win the gold but we know that we have to take one match at a time," said Prince Pal Singh after the match. In the other Pool A game, Delhi defeated hosts Goa 81-61. In the women's section, Kerala thumped West Bengal 113-24 while Uttar Pradesh got the better of Goa 60-34 in Pool A.

Important Results

Badminton (semifinals):

Men's Singles: Sourabh Varma (MP) beat Harsheel Dani (Maharashtra) 19-21, 21-14, 21-17; 4-M Tharun (Telangana) beat 2-M Mithun (Karnataka) 12-21, 21-14, 22-20

Women's Singles: Aditi Bhatt (Uttarakhand) beat M Meghana Reddy (Telangana) 7-21, 24-22, 21-16; Anupama Upadhayay (Haryana) beat 1-Aakarshi Kashyap (Chattisgarh) 21-13, 21-17

Men's Doubles: 2-Hariharan Amsakarunan/R Ruban Kumar (TN) beat Prakash Raj/Vaibhaav (Karnataka) 21-13, 21-14; HV Nithin/K Pruthvi Roy (Karnataka) beat Deep Rambiya/Akshan Shetty (Maharastra) 21-17, 21-14

Women's Doubles: 1-Sikha Gautam/Ashwini Bhat K (Kar) beat Kavya Gupta/Deepshikha Singh (Del) 21-18, 24-22; Simran Singhi/Ritika Thaker (Maharashtra) beat 2-R Arubala/VS Varshini (TN) 21-16, 21-12

Mixed Doubles: Gouse Shaikh/D Pooja (AP) 2-Nitin Kumar/Kanika Kanwal (Delhi) 21-18, 21-14; 1-Navneeth Bokka/K Maneesha (Telangana) beat Suraj Goala/Manali Bora (Asm) 21-14, 21-15



Pool A: Punjab beat Telangana 87-57; Delhi beat Goa 81-61

Pool B: Tamil Nadu beat Rajasthan 116-52; Services beat Kerala 73-70


Pool A: Kerala beat West Bengal 113-24; Uttar Pradesh beat Goa 60-34

Pool B: Karnataka beat Delhi 74-71;


Men's Artistic Team: Gold: Services (249.35); Silver: Uttar Pradesh (242.10); Bronze: Haryana (240.35)

Women's Artistic Team: Gold: West Bengal (175.90), Silver: Maharashtra (166.95, Bronze: Uttar Pradesh (142.30)



Pool A: Maharashtra beat Goa 56-52; Haryana beat Goa 56-52

Pool B: Kerala beat Telangana 77-43


Pool A: Haryana beat Telangana 59-52; Himachal Pradesh beat Goa 44-38

Pool B: Delhi drew with Uttar Pradesh 44-44; Karnataka beat Gujarat 61-49.

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