Karnataka relay team falters; Kerala win

Kyathi takes home pole vault title with 3.65M leap

 On a day saddened by the death of their Chef-de-Mission Suresh Babu, the Kerala quartet comprising of Shantini V, Neethu Rajan, Shamna Muhammed and Priya PK packed a punch as the favourites, grabbing the 4x100M relay gold in style on the fourth day of the athletics competition at the Birsa Munda stadium.

Karnataka, with HM Jyothi in their ranks, were one of the dark horses to upset the defending champions but with the meet’s fastest woman not even getting the baton, their hopes came crashing down within 13 seconds.

Off the blocks smoothly on lane one, Manjushree faltered while handing the baton to Shilpa Sundar managing to do it only after crossing the zone. All that anchor Jyothi could do was watch in dismay.

“It happens,” said a disappointed Jyothi.

“I really thought we had a chance of causing an upset -- the girls are talented -- but with baton exchange not happening correctly, there is nothing much you can do.”

Strong charge

Kerala eves, however, had a smooth journey with anchor Priya PK holding off a strong charge from Madhya Pradesh’s Merlink Thomas to cross the finish line at 46.49 for gold. While Madhya Pradesh took silver at 47.50, Punjab finished third at 47.53.

Earlier, Kyathi landed Karnataka’s third gold medal from the track and field events, her leap of 3.65 metres in pole vault fetched her a victory.

Jharkhand’s Taposi Nandy (3.50) bagged silver with Dija KC leaping 3.30 for the bronze. Shameer Mon continued to dazzle as Services’ men broke Delhi’s 2002 record to claim the top prize in the men’s 4x100M relay.

Brilliant from start to finish, Services timed 39.94 while Andhra Pradesh were second best with Kerala emerging third.

Results: Men: 800M: Sajeesh Joseph (Kerala) 1:48.43, 1; Satnam Singh (Punjab) 1:48.48 (Bettered Meet Record) 2; Ghamanda Singh (Rajasthan) 1:49.03, 3.

4x100M relay: Services (Hemant Kirulkar, Joseph MG, Sameer Mon, Nitin Kumar) 39.94 seconds (New Meet Record -- Old: 40.72, Delhi) 1; Andhra Pradesh (P Pushparaju, K Pavan Kumar, M Manikandarai, Abdul Najeeb Qureshi) 40.59 (Bettered Meet Record) 2; Kerala (Dibin Eldhose, Freji Jose, Sujith Kuttan, Renjith KR) 40.77, 3.

3000M steeplechase: Jaiveer Singh (Services) 8:48.68 (NMR -- Old: 8:58.10, Pradeep Kumar Dogra) 1; Th Sanjit Luwang (Manipur) 8:49.29 (BMR) 2; Elam Singh (Services) 8:55.41, 3.

Javelin throw: Vipin Kasana (Delhi) 77.22 metres, 1; Rohit Kumar (Uttar Pradesh) 75.03, 2; Kasinath naik (Services) 73.14, 3.

Women: 800M: Sushma Devi (Haryana) 2:18.17, 1; Pratima Tudu (West Bengal 2:18.42, 2; NC Mohanal (Tamil Nadu) 2:18.78, 3.

4x100M relay: Kerala (Shanthini V, Neethu Rajan, Shamna Muhammed, Priya PK) 46.49, 1; Madhya Pradesh (Sini Alex, Viji Vijayan, Ambili Thomas, Merlink Thomas) 47.50, 2; Punjab (Navjot Kaur, Navpreet Kaur, Goldi Shahi, Rucha Patil) 47.53, 3.

Pole vault: Kyathi (Karnataka) 3.65m, 1; Taposi Nandy (Jharkhand) 3.50, 2; Dija KC (Kerala) 3.30, 3.

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