TN's Suriya, Lakshmanan emerge victorious

L. Suriya of Tamil Nadu clinched the gold in the women’s 10,000 m clocking 33:27.01 at the 56th National inter-state athletics meet in Hyderabad. In the men’s 5000m, G. Lakshmanan of Tamil Nadu clocked 14:06.04 to win the gold. Both however missed the Rio mark.

L. Suriya of Tamil Nadu after winning the 10km gold at the 56th National inter-State athletics meet at the GMC Balayogi Stadium in Hyderabad on Tuesday.   -  Nagara Gopal

L. Suriya of Tamil Nadu clinched the gold in the women’s 10,000 m clocking 33:27.01 in the 56th National inter-state athletics meet at the GMC Balayogi Stadium here on Tuesday.

Swati Gadhave of Maharashtra (33:45.40) and another Maharashtrian Sanjivani Jadavi (33:54.77) finished second and third respectively.

However, this was well below 25-year-old Suriya’s best timing in Guwahati where she clocked 32:29.86 on her way to golden double in the 5000 and 10,000m events. However, the Rio Olympics qualifying mark is 32:15.00.

“I had problem in my left knee after I had a fall yesterday and could not give off my best,” a visibly disappointed gold medallist remarked later. “I really trained hard but could not match the expectations here. I don’t want to blame anything else for this. But I am terribly disappointed,” she added.

In the men’s 5000m, G. Lakshmanan of Tamil Nadu clocked 14:06.04 to win the gold (Rio qualifying mark is 13:25.00) which is well below par his personal best of 13:36.62 which fetched him a bronze in the last year’s Asian Championship in Wuhan (China). However, this is his third gold in the Inter-state championship 5 km events having won in 2013 and 2015 editions.

Lakshmanan said later that he had problems with the water-logged track because of heavy rains the previous night. “I had great hopes of putting up a much better performance here. Certainly, not pleased with my showing today,” he remarked.

Suresh Kumar Patel of Uttar Pradesh, gold medallist in the Asian junior championship 10 km, clocked 14:11.45 for silver while his teammate from U.P., Yunus Mohammed, settled for bronze with a timing of 14:24.07.

In the women’s long jump, V. Neena of Kerala notched up her personal best performance with an effort of 6.45 m which is better than her previous best of 6.39 m in the last Kerala National Games.

In a way, it was also some sort of revenge for Neena, who not only defended her title here but got the better of her statemate M.A. Prajusha, who pipped the former to win gold in the previous two meets – Fed Cup and the Grand Prix this April.

The results: All finals:

Women: 10 km: 1. L. Suriya (Rlys) 33:27.01, 2. Swati Ghadave (Maha) 33:45.40, 3. Sanjivani Jadavi (Maha) 33:54.77.

Long jump: 1. V. Neena (Ker) 6.45 m, 2. M.A. Prajusha (Ker) 6.29 m, 3. Shradhha Ghule (Maha) 5.98 m.

Shotput: 1. Manpreet Kaur (Pjb) 16.78 m, 2. Navjeet Kaur (Pjb) 15.36 m, 3. Sonal Goyal (Del) 13.43 m.

Hammer throw: 1. Sarita Prakash (UP) 61.19 m, 2. Reena (Har) 54.23 m, 3. Athira Muralidi (Ker) 48.52 m.

Men: 5 km: 1. G. Lakshmanan (TN) 14:06.04, 2. Suresh Kumar Patel (UP) 14:11.45, 3. Yunus Mohammed (UP) 14:24.07