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  • ଓଡ଼ିଆରେ ପଢନ୍ତୁ

Incheon: Defending champions India stayed on course for double gold in kabaddi as the sport's powerhouse stormed into the finals of both men and women's events respectively, with resounding wins at the 17th Asian Games, here on Thursday.

Chasing an unprecedented eighth yellow metal in the mega-event, the Indian men defeated South Korea 36-25 in the semi-final to cruise into yet another final.

India scored 14 points to Korea's 12 at the end of first half, but raised their game in the second to log another 22 points as against the opposition's 13.

India earned seven bonus points in the first half and 1 in the second, besides two lona each in the both halves. There was no lona for Korea, who were awarded five bonus points in the match.

India had earlier beaten Pakistan, Bangladesh and Thailand to top Group A with an all-win record.

Indian men have won the kabaddi gold in each edition since the sport was added in the 1990 Games.

Earlier, the Indian women's kabaddi team recorded a comprehensive 41-28 victory over Thailand in the semifinals and stormed into the title clash with a lot of confidence while ensuring at least a silver medal.

While both teams were tied at 14-14 at the end of first half, the Indians were at their devastating best in the second half as they scored 27 points to the opposition's 14, ensuring a comfortable win in the process.

India won 2 bonus points in the first half and four in the second besides as many lona on court 2 of Songdo Global University Gymnasium. They will meet Iran, who have beaten Bangladesh in the semifinal, in the title clash tomorrow.

In contrast, Thailand earned seven bonus points in the first half and six in the second, but there was not a single lona.

In the initial phase, the Indian women had produced a clinical performance to outwit hosts South Korea 45-26 and ensure their passage into the last-four stage as group toppers. India had beaten Bangladesh in their opening match.

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