Saurav Ghosal failed to create history at Incheon on Tuesday as he lost the chance to become the first Indian to win a men's singles Asian Games squash gold. In a thrilling final against Kuwait's Abdullah Al Muzayen at Yeorumul Squash Courts , Ghosal lost 3-2 after winning the first two games. The marathon final lasted 102 minutes. India remain with just one gold medal so far after Jitu Rai had won a shooting gold on the first day of the competition on September 20. (Asian Games Day 4 Live Blog | Tally | Schedule)
Ghosal, world No. 16, was the favourite to win gold. But Al Muzayen, world No. 46, gave the Indian a tough fight, coming back from two games down and forcing the deciding fifth. Ghosal won the first 12-10 and carried the momentum into the second to decimate the Kuwaiti 11-2. (Abhinav Bindra finishes Asian Games career with bronze)
Al Muzayen came back strongly. The third game went neck and neck, with the Kuwaiti winning 14-12. The fourth game was also clinched 11-8 by Al Muzayen as Ghosal showed signs of nerves and lethargy. (Judoka wins bronze with dislocated shoulder)
The fifth was another thriller. Ghosal blew an early lead as the 26-year-old 2010 Gulf champion Al Muzayen caught up 3-3, only to overtake the Indian at 8-7. Playing his second Asian Games, Al Muzayen never looked back and won the game 11-9. This has been his biggest career victory.
Ghosal has been an Asian Games veteran. Before the Incheon Games, the Kolkata-born Indian star had won three bronze medals - two individual and a team. The 28-year-old from Kolkata became the first Indian to make the quarterfinals of the world championship in Manchester last year. The Asian Games gold would have been a perfect way to cap his 12-year-old international career.