Kashinath, Joseph star for Karnataka on concluding day

Kashinath, Joseph star for Karnataka on concluding day

Powerhouse Kerala retain overall title

Karnataka’s MG Joseph powers to the 200M gold in the Inter-State Athletics Championships at the Sree Kanteerava stadium on Tuesday. DH Photo/ Kishor Kumar Bolar

On the final day of the four-day meet at the Sree Kanteerava stadium, Kashinath nailed the gold with an effort of 73.77 metres while Joseph bulldozed his way through the 200M field, sealing the top spot in 21.82 seconds. The two medals took Karnataka’s tally to four gold, with the State also finishing with two silver and three bronze medals.

Kerala, champions for the last four years, extended their reign by another year with a total of 13 gold, seven silver and seven bronze. Their closest rivals, Punjab, were way behind with six gold, three silver and seven bronze.

The final day had a clutch of impressive performances, with Sajeesh Joseph and Ghamanda Ram producing a grand-stand finish in the 800 metres and Amritpal Singh delivering a big leap in long jump.

A meet record bit the dust as well, with Asian Games champion Sudha Singh setting a new time in the 3000M steeplechase, while Tintu Luka’s quest for a bright start in the 800M was thwarted by stiff winds that blew across the venue.

Sirsi man Kashinath steadily came into the picture in the javelin arena, climbing from third place to the top spot in the fourth round. Starting with a 64.20 first-round effort, he improved to 67.31 and 68.69 before hurling the spear to his best effort of the day. Showers that hit the stadium then prevented the throwers from going farther in subsequent rounds.

Joseph, who had won the South Zone junior title five years back in Ranchi, showed he was back in business, leading all the way through. The MEG man didn’t score any points in style as he tightened up near the finish but Tamil Nadu’s Manikanda Arumugam and Mayur Malviya of Gujarat were way back to trouble him.

In sharp contrast was the men’s 800M, where Ghamanda’s quest for a double was dashed by Sajeesh at the post in a thrilling finish with only three-hundredths of a second separating the first two places. Ghamanda, making a strong comeback this season, was in control but didn’t seem to be aware of the approaching danger near the finish.

Ghamanda raised his arm in celebration but a bit prematurely, allowing Sajeesh to sneak away with the gold in his personal best of 1:47.34. The ONGC man himself had his best time in six years -- 1:47.37 -- and wasn’t too disappointed with the result. “You can say this is my best race; because he celebrated, I got in,” said Sajeesh. “We had a good contest in the Asian Grand Prix series and today I went all out.”

Tintu, running only her second race after her Asian Games bronze medal effort, was hardly challenged and had to set her own pace. But a spell of rain lashed the arena just before the race and with the wind too bothering the runners, it wasn’t the start Tintu wanted, even though she clobbered the field in 2:05.32.

“I was looking close to 2:02 but it was difficult with the wind and rain to pace the race correctly,” said Tintu, adding that she had recovered completely from the hamstring problems that bothered her post-Asian Games.

Uttar Pradesh girl Sudha Singh timed 10:01.24 to erase OP Jaisha’s meet mark of 10:03.05 but was way behind her own national record of 9:55.67 set at the Asian Games last year. Technical officials bungled in a big way nearing the end, removing one of the hurdles with the last two athletes still to complete their final lap.

Another National record holder, Amritpal Singh, obliged in the long jump pit with an effort of 7.80 metres where Ankit Sharma, who led with a 7.74 after the first round, had to hobble off with an injured leg.

Results: Men: 200M: MG Joseph (Karnataka) 21.82 seconds, 1; Manikanda Arumugam (Tamil Nadu) 21.88, 2; Mayur Malaviya (Gujarat) 21.90, 3.

800M: Sajeesh Joseph (Kerala) 1:47.34, 1; Ghamanda Ram (Rajasthan) 1:47.37, 2; Satnam Singh (Punjab) 1:48.31, 3.

110M hurdles: Surendhar (Tamil Nadu) 14.62 seconds, 1; M Krish Beethoven (Manipur) 14.66, 2; MK Sumanath (Karnataka) 15.14, 3.

Long jump: Amritpal Singh (Punjab) 7.81 metres, 1; Ankit Sharma (Madhya Pradesh) 7.74, 2; Sudhir (Haryana) 7.70, 3.

Javelin throw: Kashinath Naik (Karnataka) 73.77 metres, 1; Amit Majumdar (Bihar) 71.18, 2; Rajender Singh (Haryana) 70.68, 3.

4x100M relay: Tamil Nadu 41.33 seconds, 1; Kerala 41.58, 2; Karnataka 41.83, 3.
4x400 relay: Kerala 3:14.08, 1; Karnataka 3:14.59, 2; Punjab 3:15.51, 3.
Women: 200M: K Mrudula (Andhra Pradesh) 24.93 seconds, 1; Archana (Tamil Nadu) 25.27, 2; Rebecca Jose (Karnataka) 25.38, 3.

800M: Tintu Luka (Kerala) 2:05.32, 1; Bindu SR (Kerala) 2:10.32, 2; Pavithra (Tamil Nadu) 2:12.60, 3.
100M hurdles: Anchu MM (Kerala) 13.90 seconds, 1; Kalaivani (Tamil Nadu) 14.60, 2; V Hani (Chhattisgarh) 15.22, 3.
Shot put: P Udayalakshmi (Andhra Pradesh) 14.14 metres, 1; Vasumathi (Tamil Nadu) 13.13, 2; Sonia (Haryana) 13.13, 3.
3000M steeplechase: Sudha Singh (Uttar Pradesh) 10:01.24 (NMR. Old: 10:03.05, O P Jaisha, 2010), 1; Priyanka Singh Patel (Uttar Pradesh) 10:21.37, 2; OP Jaisha (Punjab) 10;25.10, 3.
4x100M relay: Kerala 46.99 seconds, 1; Tamil Nadu 47.65, 2; Bengal 47.87, 3.
4x400M relay: Kerala 3:44.81, 1; Andhra Pradesh 4:00.51, 2; Tamil Nadu 4:03.71, 3.
Team championship: Kerala.
Best athlete: Men: Sajeesh Joseph. Women: Mayookha Johny.

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