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Girl power nets first gold for Jharkhand

- Karatekas from Assam & MP hold ground on penultimate day of national meet

The penultimate day of the 26th National Karate Championship at the twin venues of New Badminton Hall and Mohan Ahuja Stadium brought some good news for host Jharkhand.

The state team, which had to be content with one silver and a bronze till late Thursday evening, added one gold to its medal tally on Friday, thanks to Nisha Hans who bagged the top slot in the kumite category in 12-13 age group.

However, in both the kata and kumite categories, Assam and Madhya Pradesh maintained their positions.

On Friday, Assam is leading the table with 14 medals ó five gold, same number of silver and four bronze. MP is closing in with 10 ó four gold, one silver and five bronze.

On Friday, Assamís Prabhatangshu Phukan claimed gold in the kata category in the 14-15 age group, tripping Delhiís Shubham Don to the second spot. Gujaratís Kevin Shan and G. Shrivarsan of Tamil Nadu finished with bronze.

Manipurís Md Ziaur Rahman won kumite gold in the 9-10 age group, while Suryansh Thakur of Himachal Pradesh had to be happy with silver. MPís Vasu Kirar and Lovejot Sharma of Punjab finished with bronze.

Gujarat karateka Mitraj Rathod beat his MP opponent Vishal Rai in the kumite event (10-11 age group). Delhiís Salman Khan and Keralaís Aflah D. each had to be satisfied with bronze.

Tami Naduís P. Lalith Kumaran picked kata gold in 10-11 age group, edging out Gujaratís Kunal Rathod. Tanish Thakur and Vaibhav Kapse of Punjab and MP, respectively, stood on the third spot.

Gujarat bagged another gold with Mahek Joshi excelling in the 12-13 age group of kata event. The talented youngster beat state mate Pranjil Wadhwani. Assamís Mehnaz Tashmin and Prakriti Prasad of Tamil Nadu took bronze.

There has been no upsets in the medal tally as far as the top two states Assam and MP go. On Thursday too, Assam had led the tally with seven medals ó two golds, three silver and two bronze. MP had stood second with six ó two gold, one silver and three bronze.