The Women's 3000-metre steeplechase event during the 2014 Asian Games © Getty Images
The Women’s 3000-metre steeplechase event during the 2014 Asian Games © Getty Images

Sep 28, 2014

India could be in for a pleasant surprise as Lalita Babar’s bronze may be upgraded to a silver while her compatriot and defending champion Sudha Singh, who had finished fourth, could get bronze following the possible disqualification of gold medal winner Bahrain’s Ruth Jebeth in the women’s 3000 metre steeplechase on the first day of the track and field competition at the 17th Asian Games here Saturday.

India and China had lodged a protest against Ruth and the medals ceremony had to be cancelled at the last moment. If the protest is upheld, second-placed Chinese Zhenzhu Li, who clocked 9:35.23 secs, may be promoted to the gold medal.

Jebeth, who had clocked 9:31.36 seconds for a Games record, was in clear breach for stepping out of the track after she lost her balance in the home stretch. Jebeth was inconsolable and was taken away by a Bahraini official.

Both Lalita and Sudha had clocked their personal best timings of 9:35.37 secs and 9:31.36 secs and are in line to claim the silver and bronze respectively. Sudha had set a Games Record of 9:35.23 secs enroute to her gold medal in the 2010 Asian Games.

Another defending champion Preeja Sreedharan finished a disappointing seventh in the women’s 10,000 metre final with her season’s best timing of 32:29.17 secs. The gold went to Mohammed Saeed    Alia Mohammed with a personal best timing of 31:51.86 secs while Chinese Changqin Ding took the silver also with a personal best of 31:53.09 secs. Japanese runner Ayumi Hagiwara took the bronze with a timing of 31:55.67 secs.

Among other Indians in fray, Mohammed Kunhu and Arokia Rajiv made it to the final of the 100 metres that will be held Saturday. In the women’s 400 meters, R.Povamma and Mandeep Kaur also qualified for the final race.

Kheta Ram (13:37.40 secs)    and Suresh Kumar (13:42.28 secs) disappointed in the men’s 5000m final finishing seventh and ninth respectively despite clocking their personal best. Qatar’s Mohamad Al Garni set a Games Record to claim the gold medal with a timing of 13:26.13 secs while Bahrain’s Alemu Bekele Gebre (13:27.98secs) and Albert Kibichii Rop (13:28.08 secs) took the silver and bronze respectively.

In men’s hammer throw final, Chandrodaya Narayan Singh finished eighth with throw of 66.98m. Tajikistan’s Dilshod Nazarov clinched the gold medal with a throw of 76.82m. China picked up the silver and bronze with season’s best performances from Shizhu Wang (73.65m) and Yong Wan (73.43m).

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