35th National Games: Dutee Chand smashes meet record in heats, SSCB remain on top

Controversial teen sprinter Dutee Chand set the track ablaze in the qualifiers itself with a new meet record even as Services Sports Control Board tightened its grip around the overall title by maintaining the top position in the 35th National Games here on Tuesday.

Thiruvananthapuram: Controversial teen sprinter Dutee Chand set the track ablaze in the qualifiers itself with a new meet record even as Services Sports Control Board tightened its grip around the overall title by maintaining the top position in the 35th National Games here on Tuesday.

On the 10th day of competitions, SSCB, the two-time defending champions, stayed comfortably placed at the top with 90 medals (55 gold, 16 silver and 19 bronze). Maharashtra took the second spot on account of lesser gold medals, totalling 100 overall (27 gold, 40 silver and 33 bronze). Haryana held on to the third spot with 56 medals (27 gold, 20 silver and 9 bronze).

At the athletics arena, Dutee, representing Odisha, broke the meet record in the heats itself, clocking 11.83sec in the women's 100m sprint to better the previous mark of 11.84sec set by H M Jyothi in the 2011 edition. The 19-year-old is fighting a legal battle to compete internationally again after she was banned for failing a controversial gender test.

Dutee, who made the 100m finals later in the evening, is competing in domestic events courtesy last year's interim order from the Court for Arbitration of Sport, which cleared her to participate in home tournaments until a final verdict in January determines whether she can run again internationally.

Another meet record was shattered in the men's long jump finals where Ankit Sharma claimed the gold medal after clearing 8.04m to better the 7.79m mark set by Kerala's Shyam Kumar back in 1994. Tamil Nadu's Premkumar Kumaravel was the silver-medallist with an effort of 7.68m, followed by Karanataka's Samsheer S E (7.46m).

In the women's 1500m run, Uttar Pradesh's Monika Chaudhary upstaged pre-race favourite Sini Markose of Kerala to notch up the gold medal, accelerating in the final few meters to surprise the field. Monika clocked 4:22.01sec, beating Sini, who finished in 4:23.03sec to nab the silver medal. Haryana's Sushma Devi won the bronze medal with a timing of 4:24.01sec.

The women's hammer throw gold went into Odisha's kitty with Sarita Singh's effort of 56.47m. The silver and bronze went to Punjab's K M Rachna (56.08) and Ritu Dhiman (55.60m) of Uttar Pradesh.

There was a surprise in men's shotput finals, as national record holder Om Prakash (Haryana) had to be content with a bronze after being upstaged by statemate Inderjeet Singh. Om Prakash cleared 17.95m, way below his best of 20.69m.

Indeerjeet, on the other hand, came up with an effort of 20.14m to finish on top, while Uttar Pradesh's Satyendra Kumar managed the silver with a distance of 18.24m.

In the hockey competition being played in Kollam, SSCB entered the men's summit clash with a thumping 5-1 triumph over Jharkhand. Binay Bhengra, Davinder Singh, Siraz, Jony Jasrotia and Varinder Kumar scored in a second half flurry of goals to hammer Jharkhand, for which the only scoring strike came from Arvind Kujur.

SSCB will square off against Odisha in the final after the eastern state scripted a stunning fightback to beat Haryana in sudden death. Trailing 1-3 for better part of the match, Odisha bounced back to level the scores in the closing few minutes before finishing neck and neck with Haryana in the penalty shoot-out.

In the sudden death, Odisha held nerves to net one in but Haryana cracked under pressure to miss their chance and bow out despite dominating the majority of the match.

Haryana and Punjab will clash in an all north-Indian final of the women's event after getting the better of Jharkhand and Odisha in their respective last-four stage clashes.

Haryana and Jharkhand were the first to take the field today and the former rode on a hat-trick by Jyoti Gupta to beat Jharkhand 3-2. Kanti Pradhan scored both the goals for Jharkhand.

In the other semifinal, Punjab blanked Odisha 3-0 through goals from Anuradha Thokchom, Anu Bala and Manmeet Kaur.

The Triathlon concluded today with the mixed team competitions in which Manipur won the gold medal, leaving Gujarat and Maharashtra in the second and third position respectively.

At Kochi's badminton court, Kerala claimed the men's team gold medal, while the women's top honours were notched up by Telangana. In the men's final, Kerala defeated Haryana 3-2 even as the home state's women went down 0-2 against Telangana.

In the cycling events here, the 10km scratch race elite women's race Kerala swept the podium with Mahitha Mohan (20:15.23sec), Rejani V (20:15.23sec) and Bismi S (20:14.92sec) finishing first, second and third respectively.

The men's 15km scratch race was won by SSCB's Satbir Singh (21:31.51sec), ahead of Tamil Nadu's C Rajesh (21:31.64sec) and Haryana's Pankaj Kumar (21:31.84sec) respectively.

In the wushu competitions, Madhya Pradesh's Anjul Namdeo clinched the Taoulu Chang Quan men's gold with 9.21 points, while Meghalaya's W Tomba Singh (8.81 points) settled for the silver. SSCB's Aditya Kumar finished a close third with 8.50 points.

The women's gold in this event went to Manipur's Chaobi Devi (8.13 points), beating Madhya Pradseh's Swecha Jatav (7.52 points) and Assam's Alpana Boro (7.36 points).

The controversy-marred and severely under-strength boxing competition entered the medal rounds with the first set of semifinalists decided today in Thrissur. In the women's bouts, which took place in the first half of the day, Arunachal Pradesh's Salam Ibemcha Devi (75kg) beat Gujarat's Mona Unnikrishnan to set up a clash against Manipur's Memthoi Devi, who defeated Delhi's Heena Tokas.

The lightweight 60kg category saw Manipur's Chaoba Devi beating Jharkhand's Sarika Kumari. Chaoba will now be up against Jammu and Kashmir's Anju Bala, who got the better of Odusha's Gayatree Singh.

In the flyweight 51kg division quarters, Kerala's Alphonso Mariathomas got past Jharkhand's Jyoti Mundri and will next face Haryana's Sonia, who won over Deepika of Madhya Pradesh.

In the men's competition conducted in the second half of the day, Punjab's Jagdeep Kumar (49kg) and Jatinder Singh (52kg) and Haryana's Naveen Kumar (52kg) were among the semifinalists.

The two-day decathlon ended with Karnataka's Abhishek N Shetty clinching the gold after logging 6805 points in the 10-event competition. Kerala pocketed the silver and bronze through Raneesh V V (6803 points) and Mohammed Hafseer (6675 points).

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