Records continued to tumble on the second day of the 34th Junior National Athletics Championships in Ranchi on Saturday as a number of national marks and meet records were eclipsed at the Birsa Munda Athletics Stadium.
The new National Records were created by Akashdeep Singh in the U-20 Boys 10000m race walk, Pawana Nagraj in the U-14 Girls high jump, Pranjali Patil in the U-16 Girls 100m hurdles event, Abhinash Kumar in the U-14 Boys long jump, Aparna Roy in the U-18 Girls 100m hurdles and Saurabh Rathi in the U-18 Boys decathlon.
Akashdeep Singh of Punjab set the ball rolling in the very first event of the day, winning the gold medal with a new meet as well as national record. Singh clocked a time of 40.47.78 seconds to shatter the old national record of 41.29.85 seconds set by Satish K Patel. The old Mark was incidentally also the meet record having been set at the 2012 edition of the tournament in Lucknow.
Singh was followed closely by Juned Khan of Haryana who clocked a time of 40.56.16 seconds. While that mark would have been good for a new national record on any other day, Khan would have to be satisfied with a silver medal on Saturday morning. The bronze medal was claimed by Arshdeep Singh of Punjab who finished nearly 3 minutes behind the gold and silver medallists. He clocked a time of 43.40.33 seconds.
Nagraj, representing Karnataka recorded a jump of 1.63m to add a centimeter to the old national mark of 1.62m set by Khyati Mathur of Uttar Pradesh at the Coimbatore Junior National Athletics Championships a couple of years ago. Nagraj was closely matched by West Bengal athlete Bidisha Kundu who fell just two centimetres short of the gold medal, having registered a best effort of 1.61m. While the fight for gold and silver was close, the bronze medal effort lagged far behind. Three jumpers all had best efforts of 1.40m but it was Samiksha Adsule of Maharashtra who finished on the podium by virtue of fewer missed attempts.
Meanwhile in the U-16 girls 100m hurdles it was Pranjali Patil who clinched a gold medal with a new national record of 14.36 seconds. In doing so she shaved .9 seconds off the previous Indian record of 14.45 set by Ankita Sunil, also of Maharashtra in 2012. Patil’s mark was also a new meet record erasing the old mark of 14.47 seconds set by Aparna Roy at Coimbatore in 2016. Patil took the highest step on the podium followed by Aleena Varghese of Kerala who clocked 14.92 seconds. Maharashtra’s Mansi Mahadik claimed the bronze medal with a time of 15.21 seconds. While falling short of national marks there were other three other athletes who also recorded meet records on the day.
Meanwhile, Aparna created a new national record in the U-18 Girls category. She clocked 13.76 seconds to better her own record of 13.98 seconds which she registered in July this year in Bangkok. The silver medal was won by Thabitha P (14.34s) while Pratibha Kumari (14.47s) bagged the bronze medal.
AFI-MP’s Abhinash Kumar also entered the record books with an effort of 6.84m in the U-14 Boys long jump event and grabbed the gold medal. Previous record of 6.79m was set by Avinash Kumar of Bihar last year. Mahesh Jadhav (6.10m) of Maharashtra settled for silver while local boy Rakesh Hansda (5.76m) got the bronze medal.
In the U-18 Boys decathlon event Saurabh Rathi of Uttar Pradesh set a new national record to grab the gold medal with 6955 points. Haryana’s Mohit bagged the silver medal with 6511 points while Lalit of Manipur settled for bronze medal with 6276 points.
Punjab’s Baljit Kaur recorded a strong performance in the U-18 girl’s 5000m race walk competition. Kaur’s gold medal winning time of 24.43.54 seconds improved upon the previous meet record of 24.48.50 seconds set by Valduri Saraswa at the 2002 edition of the Junior Nationals. Kaur was joined on the podium by Munita Prajapati (24.48.54 seconds) and Jyoti (24.55.38 seconds) respectively.
Haryana’s Rekha registered an impressive jump of 1.75m to claim the gold medal in the U-20 Women’s high jump competition. The The meet record that Rekha bettered was her own. She had cleared a height of 1.74m at last year’s edition of the tournament in Mangalagiri. The national record of 1.81m stands in the name of Rubina Yadav.
Finishing behind Rekha on the Podium were Rajeshwari Das of West Bengal who recorded a best effort of 1.65m while Samiksha Uprikar of Maharashtra claimed the bronze medal with an effort of 1.60 m on the day.
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