Sejwal smashes national record, makes Asian Games cut

Sandeep Sejwal broke his own nine-year-old 50m breaststroke national record thrice in a day as he won the gold in the 14th Singapore National swimming championships in Singapore on Saturday.

Sandeep Sejwal broke his own nine-year-old 50m breaststroke national record thrice in a day.   -  Special Arrangement

Sandeep Sejwal broke his own nine-year-old 50m breaststroke national record thrice in a day as he won the gold in the 14th Singapore National swimming championships in Singapore on Saturday.

The 29-year-old from Delhi, who is coached by Dronacharya awardee Nihar Ameen in Bengaluru, topped the final with the day’s best of 27.59s, bettering his previous Indian best of 27.84 which came in 2009.

That easily beat his bronze-medal winning time of 28.26s at the last Asian Games in Incheon and helped him qualify for the coming Asiad in Jakarta. The Swimming Federation of India, according to its secretary Kamlesh Nanavati, has set the sixth place time of the last Asiad as the qualification standard for Jakarta.

Meanwhile Virdhawal Khade won the 50m freestyle silver in 22.68s, which was better than the 2014 Asiad’s sixth place time, and finished third in the 50m butterfly semifinal in 24.61s, failing to qualify for the final.