Hangzhou: After a sensational, storming performance on Sunday in which they bagged nine medals, the Indian athletes had a quiet day at the Hangzhou Olympic Sports Centre Stadium here on Monday, winning three silver medals and one bronze in all.
Vithya Ramraj set the tone for the day in the morning when she came up with a brilliant effort to equal the legendary PT Usha’s 40-year-old National Record in the women’s 400m hurdles. Vithya clocked 55.42, her personal best and qualified for the final. Usha had set the National Record way back in the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles where she missed the bronze medal by a whisker.
In the evening, Parul Chaudhary and Priti Lamba bagged silver and bronze in the women’s 3000m Steeplechase while Se Ancy won silver in the women’s long jump the 4x400m Mixed Relay team got the third silver medal after Sri Lanka was disqualified for lane infringement.
Parul Chaudhary bagged the first silver of the day in the women’s 3000m steeplechase, finishing second in 9:27.63 while Priti Lamba took bronze behind her with a personal best timing of 9:43.32. They finished behind the reigning World Champion and Jakarta Asian Games gold medallist Winfred Mutile Yavi, a Kenya-born athlete who represents Bahrain now, who set a new Asian Games Record by clocking 9:18,23, breaking the record of 9:31.36 held by her compatriot Ruth Jabel.
Sojan Edapilly Ancy leapt to a personal best distance of 6.63 metres to finish second behind China’s Shiqi Xiong, who achieved her personal best of 6.73 to claim the gold medal. “I got a very good rhythm and was happy with my effort from the second attempt itself when I hit 6.49. I am very happy considering that I had faced a challenging time for some time and it was very nice to get my personal best and win my first medal in the Asian Games,” said Ancy. She achieved her personal best in her fifth attempt. She could not go any further as she fouled her sixth and last jump.
Ancy finished second behind China’s Xiong Shiqi, who too set her personal best with a jump of 6.73m. Nga Yan Yue of Hong Kong China took the bronze medal with a distance of 6.50m, which was also her personal best.
India’s Shaili Singh, a silver medallist in the Junior World Championships, came up with a disappointing performance as she could manage only 6.48 and finished fifth among 15 participants. Shaili has a personal best of 6.76.
The third silver was claimed by the 4x400m Mixed Relay in which the Indians initially finished third but were upgraded to silver after the Sri Lankan quartet was disqualified for lane infringement.
Mohammed Ajmal had given India a good start as he led the race, clocking 43.14 seconds. Vithya completed her leg in 54.19 and handed the baton to Rajesh Ramesh with India still in first position. But Ramesh clocked 45.77 and India fell behind to second position. Subha Venkatesh completed her leg in 51.24 as India finished the race in 314.34. Bahrain took the gold medal in 3:13.02 seconds while Kazakhstan were upgraded to bronze in 3:24.85.
“I am disappointed with the performance of the Mixed Relay team. We should have won the gold medal in this, so silver is not satisfactory. We will sit down with the coaches and analyse and see what went wrong,” said Athletics Federation of India (AFI) president Adille Sumariwalla after the race.
In the pole vault, India’s Pavithra Vengatesh could manage only 4.00m, failing to come closer to her personal best of 4.10 and finished sixth as China’s Li Ling who set a new Asian Games Record of 4.63 metres to take the gold medal.
In men’s 200m, national record holder Amlan Borgohain could manage only 20.98 to finish a disappointing sixth. Borgohain could have won the silver medal if he had replicated his national record of 20.52. Japan’s Kok Ueyama won gold in 20.50 seconds Saudi Arabia’s Mohammed Abdullah Abkar won silver in 20.63 and Chinese Taipei’s Chun-Han Yang won bronze in 20.74.