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Three Nepali athletes vying in Rio Olympics today


Kathmandu, August 9, 2016: Three Nepali athletes will be vying in the Rio Olympics 2016 on Tuesday, a day after Gaurika ended her 100 m backstroke campaign in the global sports meet. Archer Jit Bahadur Muktan, judoka Phupu Lhamu Khatri and swimmer Sirish Gurung will feature in Rio.

Archer Jit Bahadur Muktanis is set to play against Indian opponent Atanu Das in the eliminator round Tuesday at NST 20:21. Jit had finished ranking round in the 60th position with 607 points among 64 competitors. He was paired against Indian opponent Atanu, who finished the ranking round with 683 points in Sambódromo, Rio.

Jit, though does not have big aim in the Olympics, has set his target on the next round entry.

However, the score during ranking round suggests that only an extraordinary performance could secure Jit a place for the next rounds.

Phupu, the gold medalist of South Asian Games (SAG) held in February, is vying against Cuba’s Maricet Espinosa in round of 32. She will compete in women’s 63kg weight category on Tuesday at 19:13 NST.

Phupu’s opponent Maricet will be tough nut to crack. The Cuban has won Gold at continental tournament Pan American Championships in 2013 and 2014 and silver the following year.

Twenty-two years old Phupu, who secured berth in the Olympics through wild card aims to stand in the mat for whole time (five minutes), a feat that none of her predecessors has achieved in the Olympics. She will be the fourth Nepali judoka to compete in the Olympics.

Teenager swimmer Sirish Gurung is beginning his Olympic campaign Tuesday. The 17-year-old will compete in men’s 100 m freestyle in heat two. He will compete in the eighth lap of heats two. The event will be played at 21:47 NST according to schedule release by Rio Olympics.

Sirish holds the national record of 58.22 seconds and he has set target of bettering his mark in Rio. Sirish currently holds 14 national records. He set national records for 45 times in the last three years.

Judging all 59 participants of the 100 m freestyle heats, only two players are behind him in the qualifying timings mentioned by official website of Rio Olympics. Australian swimmer Cameron McEvoy has the best qualifying timing of 47.04 seconds in the event.