KIUG Ashtalakhsmi: Suraj Goala’s gold, Uttara Gogoi’s five medals make Assam proud

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Guwahati, Feb 28: Badminton player Suraj Goala of Assam played a pivotal role in helping Chandigarh University clinch the men’s team gold beating Jain University in the 4th Khelo India University Games 2023, Ashtalakshmi at the National Centre of Excellence, Amingaon here on Wednesday.

Goala, who also took oath on behalf of the athletes during the KIUG 2023, Ashtalakshmi opening ceremony teamed up with Dhruv Rawat in the first doubles for Chandigarh University and stayed unbeaten throughout the tournament to become the only player from Assam to bag the gold medal in the Games that were played across the North Eastern states.

Apart from Goala, swimmer Uttara Gogoi, who also represented Chandigarh University, clinched 3 silver and two bronze medals from the swimming competition at the Dr Zakir Hussain Aquatic complex while Angshuima Hatibaruah was part of the Bharti Vidyapeeth’s women’s kabaddi team that won the silver medal.

Uttara had won silver medals in 200m butterfly, 4x100m freestyle relay and 4×100 Medley relay apart from bagging the bronze medals in 100m butterfly and 50m butterfly category.

And Goala put an icing on the cake of Assam athletes’ performance as he laid the foundation of Chandigarh University’s victory in the men’s team final after both the teams were locked at 1-1 after the first two singles matches.

“This is my first Khelo India University Games and it is a proud feeling to win the gold medal in my home state”, Goala said after the gold medal winning performance.

The 26-year-old, who recently represented India at the Badminton Asia Team Championships is now hoping to build on this success and make a mark on the international circuit.

“I will be playing a few international tournaments in the next couple of months and hope to improve my world ranking and win a few tournaments”, said the men’s doubles national champion, who is the product of the Assam State Badminton Academy system.

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