Srihari clinches gold

Karnataka come up with improved show

Srihari clinches gold

After being made to toil on the opening day, Karnataka got into their elements to nail two gold medals in record time and win a handful of other medals at the 71st Senior National Aquatic Championships at the Prakash Taran Pushkar Bhavan on Sunday.

Leading their charge was the 16-year-old backstroker Srihari Natraj who dished out a fine performance to win the 50M backstroke in record time.

“It’s been a good season for me. Coming into the race I knew I could push for the record,” said the Global Swim Centre trainee.

Struggling to catch up the defending champion and record holder Madhu PS of Services in the adjacent lane, Srihari switched gears midway and kicked hard to push ahead. He won the race in 26.58 seconds, erasing the previous meet record of 26.73 seconds set by Madhu at the Ranchi meet last year.

“I saw Madhu on the sides and I just kept going. He a good starter so I wasn’t surprised to see him ahead, but I knew I could finish better and I banked on that,” he added.

In the corresponding fixture among the women, State hope Suvana Baskar had to be content with silver as Tamil Nadu’s Nivya Raja won the race in 30.99 seconds. Suvana was almost a second behind, settling for a silver in 31.82 seconds. Maharashtra’s Jyotsna Pansare completed the podium in 31.91 seconds.

However, the biggest upset of the evening came in the women’s 200M breaststroke with Jyoti Patil of Maharashtra edging past the much fancied Saloni Dalal of Karnataka.

Leading the race till the very end, Saloni seemed to lose track and allowed Jyoti to sneak ahead in the final 15 metres and win the gold in 2:44.76. Saloni took the silver in 2:45.16 while Kalyani Sexena of Gujarat came in third in 2:45.63.

But that disappointment did not deter Saloni as she teamed up with Suvana, Damini Gowda and Malavika V to win the 4x100M medley relay in record time. The quartet clocked 4:31.70 for the gold, obliterating the previous best set by Maharashtra in 2013 at 4:34.50.

Elsewhere, it was business as usual with Beijing Olympian Veerdhawal Kahde defending his 50M freestyle title without much trouble. He clocked 23.18 seconds for the gold.

DH News Service

Results: Men: 50M freestyle: Veerdhawal Khade (Maharashtra) 23.18, 1; Anshul Kothari (Gujarat) 23.30, 2; Aaron D’Souza (Railways) 23.60, 3.

1500M freestyle: Sajan Prakash (Kerala) 15:59.02, 1; Advait Page (Madhya Pradesh) 16:14.22, 2; Saurabh Sangvekar (Railways) 16:18.75, 3. 50M backstroke: Srihari Natraj (Karnataka) 26.58 (NMR; Old: 26.73, Madhu PS, Services, 2016) 1; Madhu PS (Services) 26.80, 2; Aravind Mani (Services) 27.05, 2.

200M breaststroke: Danush S (Tamil Nadu) 2:19.75, 1; Anoop Augustine (Railways) 2:20.43, 2; S Arun (Services) 2:21.33, 3. 4x100M medley relay: Railways 3:51.47, 1; Services 3:55.14, 2; Karnataka 3:56.30, 3.

Women: 50M backstroke: Nivya Raja (Tamil Nadu) 30.99, 1; Suvana Baskar (Karnataka) 31.82, 2; Jyotsna Pansare (Maharashtra) 31.91, 3.

200M breaststroke: Jyoti Patil (Maharashtra) 2:44.76, 1; Saloni Dalal (Karnataka) 2:45.16, 2; Kalyani Sexena (Gujarat) 2:45.63, 3. 400M individual medley: Richa Mishra (Police) 5:13.22, 1; Sayani Gosh (Bengal) 5:15.61, 2; Meenakshi VKR (Tamil Nadu) 5:23.14, 3. 4x100M medley relay: Karnataka 4:31.70 (NMR; Old: 4:34.50, Maharashtra, 2013) 1; Maharashtra 4:35.16, 2; Tamil Nadu 4:41.73, 2.

Waterpolo: Men: On Saturday: Punjab W/o Madhya Pradesh; Services: 6 bt Kerala: 1; Maharashtra: 13 bt Delhi: 1; Police: 8 bt Manipur: 1; Bengal: 11 bt Karnataka 4. On Sunday: Railways: 16 bt Punjab: 2; Services: 17 bt Delhi: 1; Kerala: 5 drew with Maharashtra: 5; Police: 8 bt Bengal: 4; Karnataka: 10 bt Manipur: 0.

Women: On Saturday: Karnataka: 11 bt Manipur: 0; Police: 3 bt Bengal: 2. On Sunday: Kerala: 22 bt Manipur: 0; Maharashtra: 9 bt Police: 2.

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