Inderjeet provides a fitting climax; Jyothi wins 100M

Poovamma adjudged the best athlete

Inderjeet provides  a fitting climax; Jyothi wins 100M

He came, he saw, he conquered might be an old expression but that is exactly what Inderjeet Singh did on Monday, the final day of the 55th Inter-State Athletics Championships.

With one big heave, the giant shot-putter from Haryana applied gloss to an event that had struggled to live up to its billing on three previous days.

Quartermilers Arokia Rajiv and M R Poovamma did their bit on the final evening at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, winning their events with some dash. And there was a solid effort in the long jump pit from Kumarvel Premkumar but Inderjeet towered above his fellow gold-medal winners with his effort of 20.44 metres, accounting for the lone meet record here.

The Haryana man erased Shakti Singh’s record of 20.42 metres set 15 years ago, capping a series that read 18.41, 19.25, 18.43, 19.70 and 19.36. It was his eighth straight gold medal, an incredible sequence that began at the National Games in Thiruvananthapuram back in February.

Since then, he has won gold medals at the Federation Cup, Asian Championship, three Asian Grand Prix meets and the World University Games, laying down a marker for sheer consistency. “It doesn’t come easy but I want to keep proving myself, challenge myself,” said the 27-year-old after demolishing the field.

The delight of having achieved his goal was apparent in his celebrations – screams that tore into the silence at the massive arena, a quiet prayer to the almighty and a kiss of thanks to the shot put ring -- even as his beaten rivals, Om Prakash Singh (17.93) and Shakti Singh (17.53) looked on with morose expressions.

There weren’t any extravagant celebrations a short while earlier when Arokia Rajiv blazed around the track in terrific fashion for a personal best of 45.72 seconds, narrowly missing the World Championship qualification mark of 45.50. The wiry Tamil Nadu runner improved upon his 45.85 timed at the second Asian Grand Prix at Pathumthani earlier this month.

But for a slight slowing down in between, Poovamma could have clocked her season’s best. She collared the field that included Jisna Mathew, Debashree Majumdar  and Anilda Thomas in 52.78 seconds, fetching Karnataka their third gold medal here. The 16-year-old Jisna, who has risen swiftly this season, clocked her career-best 53.51 for the silver. She had run 53.84 while winning the silver at the Asian Youth Meet in Doha.

Karnataka picked up another gold from the track through H M Jyothi in the 100M, with the Canara Bank runner dominating the field to triumph in 11.87 seconds. Merlin K Joseph, running for Gujarat, won silver in 12.08 while Dutee Chand was third in 12.10. Srabani Nanda, the favourite, was disqualified for a false start in the semifinal.

Haryana’s Dharambir Singh, the 200M winner, completed a sprint double with victory in the men’s 100M, clocking 10.51 seconds. Tamil Nadu’s G Lakshmanan and L Suriya also notched doubles, with victories in the 10000M. Another Tamil Nadu athlete, Premkumar, leapt to 7.91M to defeat Ankit Sharma (7.71) for the long jump gold.

Kerala won the overall team championship while Inderjeet and Poovamma were named the best athletes. The men’s 4x400 relay was cancelled as only two teams were entered in the race.

Results: Men: 100M: Dharambir Singh (Haryana) 10.51 seconds, 1; Amiya Kumar Mallick (Odisha) 10.58, 2; Vikas Gulia (Delhi) 10.65, 3.

400M: Arokia Rajiv (Tamil Nadu) 45.72 seconds, 1; A Dharun (Tamil Nadu) 46.87, 2; Jibin Sebastian (Chhattisgarh) 47.32, 3.

1500M: Ajay Kumar Sarohi (Uttar Pradesh) 3:50.18, 1; Jinson Johnson (Kerala) 3:50.56, 2; Ravinder Singh (Uttarakhand) 3:51.43, 3.

10000M: G Lakshmanan (Tamil Nadu) 29:50.21, 1; Gopi T (Kerala) 29:57.96, 2; Kheta Ram (Rajasthan) 30:30.50, 3.

110M hurdles: Prem Kumar (Telangana) 14.39 seconds, 1; Pinto Mathew (Kerala) 14.43, 2; J Thiyagarajan (Tamil Nadu) 15.11, 3.

Long jump: Kumarvel Premkumar (Tamil Nadu) 7.91 metres, 1; Ankit Sharma (Haryana) 7.71, 2; Samsheer S E (Karnataka) 7.55, 3.

Shot put: Inderjeet Singh (Haryana) 20.44 metres (New Meet Record. Old: 20.42, Shakti Singh, 2000), 1; Om Prakash (Haryana) 17.93, 2; Shakti Singh (Rajasthan) 17.53, 3.

Hammer throw: Neeraj Kumar (Rajasthan) 65.23 metres, 1; Sukhdev Singh (Haryana) 59.95, 2; Jannissar Akhtar (Uttar Pradesh) 59.95, 3.

Women: 100M: H M Jyothi (Karnataka) 11.87 seconds, 1; Merlin K Joseph (Gujarat) 12.08, 2; Dutee Chand (Odisha) 12.10, 3.

400M: M R Poovamma (Karnataka) 52.78 seconds, 1; Jisna Mathew (Kerala) 53.51, 2; Debashree Majumdar (Bengal) 53.68, 3.

1500M: Sushma Devi (Haryana) 4:22.05, 1; Chitra P U (Kerala) 4:25.78, 2; Kiranjit Kaur (Tamil Nadu) 4:26.88, 3.

10000M: L Suriya (Tamil Nadu) 33:31.25, 1; Swati Gadhwe (Maharashtra) 35:13.52, 2; Manisha Salunkhe (Maharashtra) 36:34.46, 3.

100M hurdles: Gayathry Govindharajan (Tamil Nadu) 13.88 seconds, 1; Sajitha K V (Tamil Nadu) 14.32, 2; Keerthana (Tamil Nadu) 14.78, 3.

Discus throw: Navjeet Kaur (Punjab) 53.26 metres, 1; Parmila (Haryana) 50.49, 2; Baljeet Kaur (Punjab) 47.07, 3.

Heptathlon: Purnima Hembram (Odisha) 5444 points, 1; Liksy Joseph (Kerala) 5320, 2; Niksy Joseph (Kerala) 5239, 3.

4x400M relay: Kerala (Shahar Sidhique, Jisna Mathew, R Anju, Tintu Luka) 3:42.28, 1; Bengal 3:48.41, 2; Tamil Nadu 3:51.56, 3.

Team championships: Kerala (177.5 points) 1; Tamil Nadu (146.5) 2. Men: Haryana (99) 1; Tamil Nadu (76) 2. Women: Kerala (114.5) 1; Tamil Nadu (70.5) 2.

Best athletes: Men: Inderjeet Singh. Women: M R Poovamma.

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