Gaurika equals Bista’s SAG golds record

Kathmandu, December 9

Swimming sensation Gaurika Singh today claimed the fourth gold medal in the 13th South Asian Games and became the first Nepali player to achieve the feat in the same Games.

The 17-year-old, who is the first Nepali swimmer to win individual section medal, left the sporting fraternity stunned when she finished first in 100m freestyle event with a timing of 58.13 seconds to win her fourth gold medal in the ongoing meet. Indian duo Shivangi Sarma (58.15 s) and Annie Jain (59.04 s) came second and third, respectively.

Gaurika then teamed up with Duana Lama, Tisa Shakya and Anushiya Tandukar to bag bronze medal in 400m medley relay to end the campaign with a total of nine medals — four gold, two silver and three bronze.

Gaurika became the first athlete to win four gold medals in the same South Asian Games and equalled the overall record of Deepak Bista, who had bagged four golds from as many SAF Games.

With her nine medals in the 13th edition of the regional sporting extravaganza, Gaurika took her individual tally to 13 medals.

She was lost for words when THT spoke to her. “I am speechless and have not been able to describe the feeling,” said Singh.

“South Asian Games turned out to be very special, as I was not sure of winning. The fourth gold medal is the best as it came after stiff competition. And it’s more special as (social worker) Anuradha Koirala was among the audience,” said Gaurika.

She hoped that someone else would break her record. “I want someone to break my records at the earliest,” said Gaurika, adding that she would now focus on qualifying for Olympics, “as only nine months remained for the meet”.