Tajikstan, Bahrain And UAE Pick Up First Golds In Incheon

A host of nations picked up their first gold medals of the Asian Games as the athletics got under way on Saturday.

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After the curtain came down on events at the Aquatics Centre on Friday, Saturday saw the action commence at Incheon Stadium.

And there was a chance for the crowd to see a selection of new nations atop the podium, with Tajikstan, Bahrain and United Arab Emirates all registering their first triumphs.

Dilshod Nazarov claimed victory for Tajikstan in the men’s hammer throw, holding off the Chinese duo of Wang Shizhu and Wan Yong, while Ruth Jebet crossed the line first in the women’s 3,000m steeplechase for Bahrain and the UAE triumphed in the women’s 10,000m thanks to Alia Saeed Mohammed.

Jebet’s time of nine minutes and 31.36 seconds was an Asian Games record.

Japan have endured a difficult 24 hours after swimmer Naoya Tomita was accused of stealing a camera owned by a South Korean media organisation, but double gold in the freestyle wrestling will have lifted their spirits somewhat.

Eri Tosaka beat China’s Sun Yanan to win the women’s 48kg, while Rio Watari also beat Chinese opposition in the women’s 63kg.

Jong Hak-jin of North Korea and Bekzod Abdurakhmonov of Uzbekistan took gold in the men’s 57kg and 70kg respectively.

Earlier in the day, South Korean Na Ah-reum made up for her heartache of 2010 with victory in the women’s cycling individual time trial.

Na crashed out in Guangzhou four years ago, failing to claim a medal.

But the 24-year-old made amends on Saturday, winning gold on home soil with a time of 37 minutes, 54 minutes and 43 seconds.

Kazakhstan’s Alexey Lutsenko was victorious in the men’s event.

The hosts also enjoyed success in the women’s team compound archery event – Choi Bo-min, Kim Yun-hee and Seok Ji-hyun earning gold ahead of Chinese Taipei and India.

South Korea, though, had to settle for silver in the men’s compound as India emerged triumphant. Iran took bronze ahead of the Philippines.

The individual golds went to Choi in the women’s event and Esmaeil Ebadi of Iran in the men’s.

In the men’s 10 metre running-target mixed shooting event, North Korean Kim Ji-song won gold, while China won gold in the team event, ahead of North Korea and Vietnam.

China claimed gold in four of the remaining five shooting events to strengthen their position at the top of the overall medal table.

In the day’s remaining events, India beat Malaysia to gold in the men’s team squash final, while the result was reversed in the women’s, and Indonesia triumphed in the women’s badminton doubles.

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