Good news came from the track as Govind Laxmanan won the double in long distance races, he had won the 5000 m on Saturday and came back strongly to bag the yellow medal in the 10000 m on Sunday at the 22nd Asian Athletics Championships.
Apart from Govind heptathlete Swapna Barman added another yellow metal as India continued their dominance on the fourth and final day.
However, India missed one gold as Archana Adhav who was disqualified after winning the gold medal.
Indians finish off with a bang in the 22nd Asian Athletics Championships. India end the Championships with their best ever medal haul and finished the event atop the medal tally. Moreover, India has ended China's hegemony in Athletics in the Asian region.
Jinson Johnson and Purnima Hembram also won a bronze each in the men’s 800m race and women’s heptathlon to swell India’s medal tally.
Pune girl Archana, who will turn 22 on July 14, bagged the gold in the half mile distance in her personal best time of 2 minutes and 2 seconds as she came from behind to finish first in front of a packed crowd at the Kalinga Stadium.
In the process, she ended the domination of compatriot and defending champion Tintu Luka in this distance.
With the win, Archana also qualified for the World Championships to be held in London next month.
National record holder Luka did not finish the race as she pulled out in the second lap. Her coach P T Usha said that Luka had fever and back pain but still ran the race.
Sri Lankans Nimali Waliwarsha Konda (2:05:23) and third-placed Gayanthika Thushari (2:05:27) took the silver and bronze respectively.
Till recently, Archana was competing at the junior level and she had won a bronze in 800m in Asian Junior Championship in 2014 and she also used to run in 4x400m relay race.
“I am happy to win this gold and I beat Tintu Luka. I was not sure whether I would win a gold today but I was prepared to be able to compete at this level. This is my first gold at the senior,” she said after her win.
Asked what strategy she had planned before the race, Archana said, “My coach told me I should preserve my energy so that I can pull it off towards the end,” she said.
“I will give my best at the World Championships.”
In women’s heptathlon, Barman ran away with the gold
despite finishing fourth in the seventh and last event of 800m as she had already taken a lead of enough points to emerge triumphant.
The 20-year-old from Bengal, who collected a total of 5942 points from seven events, collapsed just after crossing the 800m race finishing line and she was taken for immediate medical attention.
To her credit, Barman had cleared 2 cm higher in her high jump event than the individual gold winner yesterday.
Japan’s Meg Hemphill was second with 5883 points while Hembram was third with 5798 points.
Johnson, meanwhile, clocked 1:50.07 to bag the bronze in men’s 800m race.
(With PTI inputs)