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Two Uttarakhand Players Chosen for Prestigious Para Asian Games 2022

Almora: The Para Asian Games 2022 in Hangzhou, China, will see the participation of a 13-member Indian lawn ball team, including the talented para-sports athletes Neelima Rai and Nirmala Mehta from Uttarakhand. This competition is slated to occur from October 22 to October 28.

Neelima Rai, hailing from Kalinagar in Dineshpur, Udham Singh Nagar district, expressed her excitement, stating, "I clinched a gold medal in the doubles category, a silver in singles, and a bronze in mixed doubles during the 2022 National Para Lawn Ball event. Despite my full-time job as a fourth-grade employee at the Mandi Directorate, this will mark my debut appearance at the Asian Games."

Nirmala Mehta, who works as a daily wage clerk at Uttarakhand Open University in Haldwani, shared her journey and challenges, saying, "I recently acquired a sports wheelchair to compete at the Asian Games, but procuring the necessary equipment, including four lawn balls, a jack, a ball lifter, and a mat, presents a financial challenge. To meet this requirement, I am working hard to raise approximately Rs 3.5 lakhs and plan to import the equipment from England."

Understanding Para Lawn Bowls: A Sport of Precision and Skill

Para lawn bowls, often referred to as simply "lawn bowls," is a sport that demands precision, concentration, and strategic thinking. It is played on a rectangular green called the "rink." The objective of the game is to roll asymmetric balls, called "bowls," so that they stop as close as possible to a smaller white ball called the "jack."

Here's how it works:

  1. The Setup: At the beginning of the game, the jack is rolled to a specific spot on the rink. Players take turns to roll their bowls, aiming to get them as close to the jack as possible.

  2. Scoring: The closer a player's bowl is to the jack, the more points they score. Only the closest bowl from each player is counted.

  3. Strategy: Players must consider the rink's surface, the bias of their bowls, and the position of their opponents' bowls to make accurate shots. The sport requires a combination of skill, precision, and tactical thinking.

  4. Singles, Pairs, and Triples: Lawn bowls can be played in various formats, including singles (one player per team), pairs (two players per team), and triples (three players per team).

  5. Etiquette: Lawn bowls is known for its sportsmanship and etiquette. Players are expected to maintain decorum and respect for their opponents throughout the game.

It's a sport that requires not only physical skill but also mental acuity. The ability to adapt to changing conditions on the rink and make strategic decisions is crucial for success. Para lawn bowls, in particular, highlights the resilience and determination of athletes who overcome physical challenges to compete at the highest level. Neelima Rai and Nirmala Mehta's journey to the Para Asian Games 2022 is a testament to their dedication and passion for this unique and fascinating sport.

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