Jauna Murmu, A Dharun make the cut for Asian Games among seven other Indians

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Jauna Murmu, A Dharun make the cut for Asian Games among seven other Indians

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SportsCafe Desk


Jauna Murmu created Meet record in women’s 400m hurdle, while A Dharun and Santosh Kumar T came under the games qualification mark of 50.80 in the men’s category to make it to the Asian Games. Sandeep Kumari, Sanjeevani Jadhav, Sarita Singh and Dutee Chand were among others to make the cut.

The 58th National Inter State Senior Athletics Championships began in Guwahati on Tuesday, where seven Indian athletes achieved the qualifying marks set for Asian Games to be held in Jakarta. Among the seven athletes, five qualified for track events while two made the cut for field events. 

Odisha’s Jauna Murmu set the ball rolling by being the first athlete to earn the berth in Jakarta Games as she qualified for women’s 400m hurdles. Her winning time of 57.02 seconds was inside the qualifying mark of 57.52 secs and in the process she bettered the Meet record of 57.21 secs.

“It was a nervous start. But I managed to handle the pressure as the race progressed. When I entered the home straight, I couldn’t see my rivals and that was when I realised I was coming first; it gave me the confidence to accelerate,” said Murmu reported HT..

The 27-year-old clocked her season best on Tuesday while her personal best is 56.86 seconds in 2010 edition of Asian Games in Guangzhou. Jaudhana was among the six athletes, who were involved in the 2011 doping scandal and was suspended for two years. And she stated that she was hoping her performance would make people forget them.

“The win today will erase all those bad memories,” she said.

In the men’s 400m hurdles, the three podium finishers – Dharun Ayyasamy (49.68 secs) of Tamil Nadu, Santosh Kumar (50.10) of AFI and Jashanjot Singh (50.64) of Punjab – ran below the qualifying time of 50.80. However, as per the Athletics Federation of India norms, only the top two players are sent in individual events. Thus Jashanjot Singh will miss out on Asian Games even after bettering the mark. 

Dharun and Santhosh were part of the national team that went for a three-week training stint in Poland’s Olympic training centre in Sapala.Dharun, who braved a hamstring niggle, said staying focused in the race was the difference.

“It was challenging as Santhosh and Jashanjot were breathing down my neck. Somehow, I found that inner strength to surge ahead of them in the last 50m.”

Sanjeevani Jadhav of Maharashtra easily made the cut in women’s 5,000m, as even she bettered the meet mark of 15:46.92 secs by winning in 15:38.78 secs to eclipse. The qualifying time was 15:45 secs.

In the preliminary rounds of women’s 200m, Dutee Chand of Odisha was the fastest with the time of 23.45 secs, better than the qualifying mark of 23.50 secs, making the cut for games. Local favourites Hima Das (24.02) and Srabani Nanda (24.04 secs) will get another chance on Wednesday to qualify after advancing to finals of the event.

The two field athletes who qualified for the games were hammer thrower Sarita R Singh of Uttar Pradesh and discus thrower Sandeep Kumari of Haryana. Sarita qualified with a winning throw of 63.28m. She also bettered the meet record of 63.22m. The qualifying mark was 60m.

While discus thrower Sandeep Kumari qualified for Jakarta Games with a best throw of 58.41m with mark being 57m, 2014 Incheon Games gold medalist Seema Punia, has been exempted from participating in qualifying event and assured entry in the Games.

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