Parul Chaudhary won silver at the 2023 Asian Games© AFP
India’s Parul Chaudhary and Priti claimed silver and bronze medals respectively in the women’s 3000m steeplechase but were left in the shadow of Bahrain’s Yavi Winfred Mutile, who set an Asian Games record on Monday on her way to defending her title . Parul clocked 9:27.63 seconds, which was more than nine seconds behind the Bahraini runner who took the top podium finish in 9:18.28, a new Games record. The previous Olympic record was held by compatriot Jebet Ruth (9:31.36 sec), set during the 2014 Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea.
Although Parul also improved the record at the Asian Games, it was nowhere near her national record and personal best of 9:15.31, clocked at the World Championships in Budapest, which helped her qualify for the Olympic Games in Paris in August.
Compatriot Priti finished over 16 seconds behind Parul and clocked a personal best of 9:43.32 seconds to win the bronze in a close finish with another Bahraini runner Mekonen Tigest Getent, who clocked a time of 9:43.71 seconds and finished fourth.
Yavi started to pull away on the sixth lap of the grueling race, leaving Parul looking like an underpowered bike.
The Kenyan-born Bahraini runner, who won gold at the 2023 World Athletics Championships by beating compatriot Beatrice Chepkoech, finished at least 50 meters ahead of 28-year-old Parul.
In the men’s 200 meters, Indian Amlan Borgohain finished a distant sixth in 20.98 seconds.
The gold was won by Japan’s Koki Ueyama in 20.60 seconds, which was well below the Asian Games record of 20.14 seconds set in Incheon by Qatar’s Femi Ogunode.
Mohammed Abdullah Abkar of Saudi Arabia took the silver medal with a time of 20.63, while the bronze went to Yang Chun-Han of Chinese Taipei, who clocked 20.74 seconds.
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