Annu Rani sets a new mark in women’s javelin
Shot-putter Tajinderpal Singh Toor had set a target of 22 metres even before the National inter-State athletics championships had begun. On Monday, the star from Punjab faltered in that aim but managed to hit the Olympic qualifying mark of 21.10 metres, creating a new meet record in the process.
The qualification was not an achievement for the 26-year old, who had managed it a week ago at the 4th Indian Grand Prix. But he was disappointed with his mark here.
“I had even set markers at 22m to remind me of my target. But I have been feeling a little tightness in the forearm muscles of my throwing arm for a few days and so could not push myself completely.
“In fact, I decided to participate only after feeling comfortable during warm-ups but still was tentative on the first 3-4 throws. Participation was important because this is the last competition before Tokyo. But I am clear in my target and I am confident of doing it soon,” Toor said. His series of throws reflected the same, progressing gradually over his six throws with one foul.
It was the complete opposite for another Olympic hopeful as javelin thrower Annu Rani from U.P. could only manage a meet record of 62.83m, far below the required 64m mark. She is still likely to make the cut, placed comfortably on the Road to Tokyo rankings, but just one legitimate throw in the last competitive outing before the Games would not be a satisfying result for the National champion.
Priya makes her case
In the absence of the top stars, the men’s one-lap race was won by an impressive Kaliga Kumaraghe in 45.73s, a personal best for the Sri Lankan while the women’s competition was won by Priya Habbathanahally. It remains to be seen, however, if she will be included in the relay team, given the AFI’s strict rules on not considering non-campers. The absence of Hima Das, an off-colour V.K. Vismaya and a disappointing outing by Jisna Mathew in her first race this season may force the federation.
Men: 400m: 1. Kaliga Kumaraghe (SL, 45.73s), 2. Vikrant Panchal (Har, 46.83s), 3. Sarthak Bhambri (Del, 47.25s); 1,500m: 1. Ajay Kumar Saroj (UP, 3:42.55s), 2. Shashi Bhushan Singh (WB, 3:44.19), 3. Rahul (Del, 3:46.17); 4x100m: 1. Maharashtra (41.23s), 2. Kerala (41.99s), 3. Tamil Nadu (42.03s); Long Jump: 1. Mohd. Anees Yahiya (Ker, 7.76m), 2. Yugant Shekhar Singh (UP, 7.63m), 3. Rishabh Rishishwar (UP, 7.54m); Shot Put: 1. Tajinderpal Singh Toor (Pun, 21.10m), 2. Karanveer Singh (Pun, 19.33), 3. Vanam Sharma (Raj, 18.33).
Women: 400m: 1. Priya Habbathanahally (Kar, 53.29s), 2. M.R. Poovamma (Kar, 53.54s), 3. Revathi Veeramani (TN, 53.71s); 10,000m: 1. Pooja Harijan (Raj, 35:29.59s), 2. Phoolan Pal (UP, 37:30.24), 3. Jyoti (UP, 38:23.21); Javelin: 1. Annu Rani (UP, 62.83m), 2. Sanjana Chaudhary (Raj, 52.65), 3. Pushpa Jakhar (Har, 52.48).
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