First day of the Asian Athletics Championships in Bhubaneswar and India open their account with a gold medal.
Laxmanan, on the other hand, had to struggle for his gold medal. His long-time nemesis at the Asian circuit, Ehsan Haddadi of Iran took the gold with a best throw of 64.54m while Malaysia's Muhammad Irfan won the silver with 60.96m. India's 5,000m runner Govindan Lakshmanan produced a peach of a run in the final 250 metre to take gold with a time of 14:54.48s. Owing to her performance in Patiala at the Federation Cup, she has already qualified for the World Championships in August.
In the women's 1,500m, India's Chitra P.U. and Monika Chaudhary qualifying for the semi-finals from Heat 2 and 1, respectively. Vietnam's Bui Thi Thu took home gold with a best jump 6.54m, the same as that of Neena, but adjudged the victor as her second-best effort of 6.44m was better than that of the Indian's 6.32m. Gowda, however, managed to claim bronze with a best effort of 60.81m.
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Manpreet won the gold in the women's shotput while Laxmanan emerged triumphant in the men's 5,000 meters. He won the bronze medal in men's discus throw event. Though, she could not break the record on Thursday, Manpreet managed a throw close to her best. There wasn't much difference among the victor as Govindan completed the race in 14:54.48 while Yaser was just a second late, finish the race in 14:55.89. Saudi Arabia's Tariq Ahmed finished third in 14:56.83s.
The 5000m race will see both the Indian men and women taking up their respective positions in the finals.
In the women's section, Nirmala clocked 52.79s to top the first semifinal heat. Another Kazak sprinter Viktoriya Zyabkina finished with 11.50 sec in the first heat. Kristina Pronzhenko of Tajikistan was third in 55.43s.