Sizzling Sejwal pockets third gold

Sizzling Sejwal pockets third gold

National Games

Sizzling Sejwal pockets third gold

Sandeep Sejwal and 50M breast stroke have become almost synonymous on the Indian scene in recent times.

An Asian Games bronze won at Incheon last year accords Sejwal a special status in the sport and on Wednesday at the 35th National Games, the Madhya Pradesh swimmer gave a glimpse of his prowess while retaining the gold in the event.

At the Pirappancode swimming complex here, Sejwal easily claimed the top spot, erasing his own meet record in a sizzling performance. He clocked 27.98 seconds as against the previous mark of  29.03 set at Ranchi, leaving Haryana’s Puneet Rana well behind in second spot at 29.23 seconds.

Meet records were demolished in each of the six finals of the day, with Madhya Pradesh swimmers accounting for two, while Kerala’s Sajan Prakash, who trains at the Basvangudi Aquatics Centre in the city, won his third individual gold medal, in the men’s 200M butterfly.

Richa Mishra was the other record-breaker of the day from Madhya Pradesh, claiming the 200M butterfly gold medal after battling it out with Karnataka’s Damini Gowda. Damini’s silver and another silver in the women’s 4x200 freestyle relay were the only two medals for the State.

Damini, a 15-year-old student of BNM Public School in Bengaluru, challenged Richa with all her might but had to bow to the experience of the seasoned champion. Boldly powering ahead in the early part of the race, Damini was pegged back by Richa in the third lap and from then on, there was only one winner.

Richa clocked 2:21.66 to break her own mark of 2:23.95 set way back in 2002. Damini’s silver came in 2:22.35, her career best timing. Her previous best was 2:22.83. “I could have won the gold but she proved too experienced in the end,” said Damini. “It is great to compete with such an experienced swimmer,” added the Karnataka girl.

The State quartet of Damini, Sneha T, Shraddha Sudheer and Malavika V finished behind Maharashtra in the women’s 4x200M freestyle relay. Maharashtra bettered Karnataka’s meet mark of 9:04.68, coming home in 8:54.73, while the Karnataka girls clocked 9:00.52, also going under the existing mark.

Maharashtra were runaway winners of the same event in the men’s section, timing 7:44.24, also a meet record.

Kerala finished second in 2:00.69, while Gujarat clinched the bronze clocking 7:54.48.
In Waterpolo, Bengal men defeated Karnataka 11-3 while their women lost to the same opponents 4-5.

Results: Men:  200M butterfly: Sajan Prakash (Kerala) 2:00.69 (NMR. Old: 2:06.88, K Suresh Kumar, Kerala, 1997), 1; Supriya Mondal (Bengal) 2:00.80, 2; Aaron D’Souza (Madhya Pradesh) 2:09.19, 3.

50M breast stroke: Sandeep Sejwal (Madhya Pradesh) 27.98 seconds (NMR. Old: 29.03, Sejwal, 2011), 1; Puneet Rana (Haryana) 29.23, 2; Jashandeep Singh (Punjab) 29.40, 3.
4x200M freestyle: Maharashtra 7:44.24 (NMR. Old: 8:01.77, Karnataka, 2011), 1; Kerala 7:48.02, 2; Gujarat 7:54.48, 3.

Women: 200M butterfly: Richa Mishra (Madhya Pradesh) 2:21.66 (NMR. Old: 2:23.95, Richa, 2002), 1; Damini K Gowda (Karnataka) 2:22.35, 2; Sherlyn Meghna Devadason (Tamil Nadu) 2:25.73, 3.

50M breast stroke: A V Jayaveena (Tamil Nadu) 34.43 (NMR. Old; 35.74, Poorva Shetye, 2011), 1; Monique Gandhi (Maharashtra) 35.80, 2; Poorva Shetye (Maharashtra) 35.93, 3.

4x200M freestyle relay: Maharashtra 8:54.73 (NMR. Old: 9:04.68, Karnataka, 2011), 1; Karnataka 9:00.52, 2; Kerala 9:09.76, 3.

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