Poovamma, Joseph win silver medals in Asian Athletics C'ships

Wuhan (China): Quarter-miler Machettira Raju Poovamma and heptathlete Liksy Joseph won a silver each as India added four medals on the second day of the 21st Asian Athletics Championships here today.

Poovamma, who had also won a silver in the last edition in 2013, clocked 53.07 secs in women's 400m finals to finish second behind China's Yang Huizhen (52.37) and was followed by Anastasiya Kudinova (53.41) of Kazakhstan.

Joseph, who was trailing at sixth place at the end of opening day yesterday, cleared 6.19m in long jump today to move up to third place. Although she could not do well in javelin throw, Liksy won the 800m race, the last of her seven events, with a time of 2:13.44 and that brought her the silver medal with personal best of 5,554 points. Teammate and former Asian junior champion Purnima Hembram got the bronze with 5511 points.

G Lakshmanan got a bronze medal in a hard fought men's 5000m race with a personal best of 13:36.62. Lakshmanan, employed with Indian Army, improved his previous best by almost 14 seconds.

The women's sprint relay quartet of Dutee Chand, Srabani Nanda, G M Padmini and Sini Sahadevan missed a medal by finishing fourth with a time of 45.72 secs. The men's 4x100m relay team finished sixth in 39.67 secs and Manikanda Arumugam, who was controversially included in the relay squad, did not run the race. Jyotishankar Debnath, Krishnakumar Rane, Amiya Kumar Mallick and Abdul Najeeb
Qureshi ran the race.

There was also disappointment in men's long jump as both Ankit Sharma (7.76m) and Kumaravel Premkumar (7.69m) finished outside the podium in fourth and fifth places. Local lad Gao Xinglong (7.96m), Ted Hooper of Chinese-Taipei (7.80m) and Tang Chen of China (7.79m) bagged the gold, silver and bronze respectively.

With the four medals today, India's medal tally has swelled to one gold, two silver and two bronze. Yesterday, Inderjeet Singh had bagged a gold in men's shot put event to open India's medal account.

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