JINHUA, 24th Apr,2017 : While all eyes were on javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra, the under-20 world champion and world record holder, it was shot putter Manpreet Kaur who stole the opening leg honours of the Asian Grand Prix 2017 in Jinhua, China, today.
Manpreet, the lady from Patiala who makes the iron ball look like a feather ball, came up with a spectacular throw that carried her to the top of the world list, broke the national record and got her a World Championships seat. The 26-year-old, whose previous best of 17.96 came in Kolkata two years ago, was in roaring form, with an 18.03m early throw which put her into the lead. And she never looked back. Manpreet’s effort not only smashed the domestic record but is so far the leading mark of the season internationally as well. She is now ahead of American Michelle Carter (18.54m) in the IAAF World list for the event.
Neeraj Chopra clinched the silver in Javelin Throw with an 82.11 metre effort. The teenager from Panipat had scripted history and created a Junior World Record of 86.48 metre last year but could not improve upon it today. Chinese Taipei’s Cheng Chao won the gold with a distance of 84.72 metres. India’s Ravinder Singh came in the sixth position with a 72.23 metre effort.
In the women’s Long Jump, Neena Varakil won the silver medal with a leap of 6.46 metres, losing the gold to Bu Thi Thu Thao of Vietnam who clocked a distance of 6.58m.
National Record holder Tintu Luka of Kerala won the silver in the women’s 800m event, finishing with a time of 2.03.50. The gold medal was clinched by China’s Wang Chun Yu with a time of 2:03.25. Another athlete from Kerala, Jinson Johnson, grabbed the silver medal in the men’s 800m with timing of 1.50.71.
Dutee Chand completed the women’s 100m in 11.59s to win the bronze. The sprinter from Odisha finished behind Viktoriya Zyabkina (11.44s) and Olga Safranova (11.59s), both from Kazakhstan, who took home the top honours. Reena George came in the ninth position with a time of 12.24s.
Om Prakash Singh Karhana took home the bronze in the men’s Shot Put event with a throw of 18.41 metres.
Rakesh Babu missed out on a medal in the men’s Triple Jump, coming in fourth place with a distance of 15.95 metres. Jinu Maria finished in the ninth position in the High Jump event. Vidyasagar Siddarajanayaka suffered a disqualification in the men’s 100m event.
In all, Indian athletes bagged a total of seven medals. The second leg of the Asian Gran Prix will take place in Jianxing on the 27th April. The third and final leg will be held in Chinese Taipei on the 30th April 2017.