Golden double for Lili; Amoj, relay girls triumph

West Bengal’s Lili Das bagged a fine middle-distance double with victory in the women’s 800m while Delhi’s Amoj Jacob won the men’s 800m gold in a personal best time on the concluding day of the 17th Asian junior athletics championship at Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, on Monday evening.

Lili Das (left) added the women’s 800m to her tally, having clinched the 1,500m gold earlier.

West Bengal’s Lili Das bagged a fine middle-distance double with victory in the women’s 800m while Delhi’s Amoj Jacob won the men’s 800m gold in a personal best time on the concluding day of the 17th Asian junior athletics championship at Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, on Monday evening.

India, with three — Jishna Mathew, Shaharbana Sidhique and Linet George — of its four girls coming from Kerala, also won the women’s 4x400m relay gold while its men’s mile relay team and Assam’s Abhishek Pal (10,000m) picked silver medals on the meet’s concluding day. Meanwhile, Maharashtra’s Kisan Narshi Tadvi also won a bronze in the men’s 10,000m.

But there was a huge upset too, with javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra, the world leader in the under-20 age-group this year, finishing with just a silver in the event. Neeraj was in the lead almost all through with his opening throw of 77.60m, but Japan’s Sado Jun-Ya produced a last-round effort of 77.97m — an improvement of over four metres on his personal best — to pocket the gold.

Lili’s waiting game

Lili, who had won the 1500m gold earlier, played a perfect waiting game for her gold in the two-lapper in a personal best time. Japan’s Airi Ikezaki and Kyrgyzstan’s Arina were in the lead for a major part of the race, but Lili smartly made her move after the final corner for the gold.

With seven golds, four silvers and six bronze medals, India finished third in the final medals table, behind Japan (13 golds) and China 11 golds, of the championship.

The results (gold medallists and Indians):

Men: 800m: Amoj Jacob 1:51.82s (personal best); 4. Beant Singh 1:53.16. 10,000m: Sota Watanabe (Jpn) 31:23.93s; 2. Abhishek Pal 31:24.06; Kisan Narshi Tadvi 32:07.12. 4x400m relay: Thailand (3:11.59s); 2. India (Kiran Murugan, Pankaj Malik, Harsh Kumar, Amoj Jacob) 3:12.12. Triple jump: Sung Jin-Sonk (Kor) 16.19m; 3. Sonu Kumar (Ind) 15.99. Javelin: Sado Jun-Ya (Jpn) 77.97m; 2. Neeraj Chopra 77.60, 4. Gaurav Yadav 69.61.

Women: 200m: Le Tu Chinh (Vie) 23.94s. 800m: Lili Das 2:06.64s (PB); 7. Abitha Mary Manuel 2:12.82. 3000m: Nana Kuraoka (Jpn) 9:31.46s. 4x400m: India (Jisna Mathew, Shaharbana Sidhique, V. Subha, Linet George) 3:43.57. 400m hurdles: Haruko Ishizuka (Jpn) 57.91m; 7. Tiasha Samadder 1:01.86s. Discus: Yang Huanhuan (Chn) 51.47m

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