London, July 29: Soumyajit Ghosh, despite taking the first game rather easily, went down fighting in the second round to end India's table tennis challenge at the Games here this afternoon. Ghosh lost 1-4 (11-9, 6-11, 5-11, 9-11, 7-11) to North Korea's Hyok Bong Kim at the ExCel centre.
On the opening day of the competition, only other Indian contender Ankita Das had bowed out to Sara Ramirez of Spain in the first round.
Ghosh began promisingly against the North Korean, even as the lead kept changing hands, and won 11-9. But the superior ranked DPR Korea's paddler proved too good for the 19-year-old Ghosh was forced into commiting more mistakes. Ghosh tried his attacking game but the Kim was up to the task to restore parity.
Soon after, it was the North Korean all the way as he dismissed the Indian challenge in quick time in the third game to go 2-1 up. But undeterred, Ghosh settled into nice rhythm in the fourth and matched his rival in some good rally as well as smashes. But a crucial blunder at the net at a time when he needed to be cautious cost the Siliguri boy his next game.
All his last-ditch efforts to make match of it came to nought as the North Korean gained from strength to strength once he led 5-3 in the fifth game. He just allowed Ghosh the luxury of four more points even as he cruised along nicely to take the game and match at 11-7.
Ghosh said he was disappointed not to cash in on his chances. "But I am happy for such a great opportunity of competing on a stage like this (Olympics)," he said, adding, "this was a good learning experience."