Shot-putter Tajinderpal Singh Toor made the long wait count, finally booking a Tokyo Olympics ticket in style with a new National record of 21.49m at the fourth Indian Grand Prix at Patiala on Monday and bettering the Olympic qualifying mark by some distance. The Olympic mark is set at 21.10m.
It had been a frustrating wait for the athlete who kept insisting he was in fine form during training and had the confidence of his coach M.S. Dhillon to make the cut.
During the Federation Cup in April, Dhillon had said it was not a question of if but when Toor would do it. A series of cancelled foreign trips for training and competition did not make things easier.
In fact, every one of his four valid throws went past the Olympic mark — a series of 21.28m and a couple of 21.13m throws.
“My target was close to 21.50m and I got it on my first throw. Still, there is a long way to go for me and my target is at least 22m. I hope to do even better at the inter-state championships,” Toor said after the event.
Discus thrower Kamalpreet Kaur, meanwhile, improved her own three-month old national record by more than a metre, managing a 66.59m throw that, if replicated, would make her a serious medal contender at Tokyo going by the last two editions. That she was the only competitor in her event did not affect her performance.
Also setting a new national record was Dutee Chand in the 100m with a timing of 11.17 seconds, agonisingly missing the Olympic mark of 11.15s.
Hima wins in style
Dutee, who was expected to be in a showdown with Hima Das in the 200m, did not start that race even as Hima won in 22.88s, the fastest by an Indian woman over the distance since Saraswati Saha’s national record of 22.82s in 2002. The Olympic mark is 22.80s.
Men, 400m: 1. Sarthak Bhambri (47.45); 2. Amit Balayan (47.52); 3. A. Alex (47.55); 1,500m: 1. Ajay Kumar Saroj (3:43.46); 2. Ishu Solanki (3:53.55); 3. Sukhan Preet Singh (3:56.31); 400m hurdles: M.P. Jabir (50.51s); 4x400m: 1. India-A (3:02.61); 2. India-B (3:11.77); 3. Maldives-C (3:37.38); 3,000m steeplechase: 1. Shankar Lal Swami (8:34.40); 2. Mohd. Nur Hasan (9:19.18); 3. Parveen Dhanda (9:24.86); Long jump: 1. M. Sreeshankar (7.74); 2. Yugant Shekhar Singh (7.67); 3. Mohd. Anees Yahiya (7.60); Triple jump: 1. Eldhose Paul (16.62); 2. U. Karthik (16.21); 3. Abdulla Aboobacker (15.90); Shot put: 1. Tajinderpal Singh Toor (21.49); 2. Karanveer Singh (20); 3. Vanam Sharma (19.93); Javelin: 1. Rohit Yadav (75.83); 2. Arshdeep Singh (75.58); 3. Rajender Singh (74.28).
Women, 100m: 1. Dutee Chand (11.17); 2. A.T. Dhaneshwari (11.48); 3. Himashri Roy (11.71); 200m: 1. Hima Das (22.88); 2. Dhanalakshmi (23.14); 3. Archana Suseendran (23.26); 400m: 1. M.R. Poovamma (53.78); 2. V. Revathi Veeramani (54.28); 3. Kiran Pahal (54.48); 1,500m: 1. Harmilan Bains (4:08.27); 2. P.U. Chitra (4:25.31); 5,000m: 1. Parul Chaudhary (16:01.37); 2. Pooja Harijan (16:51.84); 4x100m: 1. India-A (43.37); 2. India-B (48.02); 3. Maldives-C (50.74); Discus: Kamalpreet Kaur (66.59); Javelin: 1. Annu Rani (60.58); 2. Sanjana Choudhary (53.54); 3. Shilpa Rani (48.74).
400m: Sarthak Bhambri (47.45s), Amit Balayan (47.52s), Alex A (47.55s); 1500m: Ajay Kumar Saroj (3:43.46), Ishu Solanki (3:53.55), Sukhan Preet Singh (3:56.31); 400m hurdles: MP Jabir (50.51s); 4x400m: India A (3:02.61), India B (3:11.77), Maldives C (3:37.38); 3000m SC: Shankar Lal Swami (8:34.40, Mohd. Nur Hasan (9:19.18), Parveen Dhanda (9:24.86); long jump: M. Sreeshankar (7.74m), Yugant Shekhar Singh (7.67m), Mohd. Anees Yahiya (7.60m); triple jump: Eldhose Paul (16.62m), Karthik U (16.21m), Abdulla Aboobacker (15.90m); shot put: Tajinderpal Singh Toor (21.49m), Karanveer Singh (20m), Vanam Sharma (19.93m); javelin throw: Rohit Yadav (75.83m), Arshdeep Singh (75.58m), Rajender Singh (74.28m).
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