Kerala’s Olympian Murali Sreeshankar and Jeswin Aldrin of Tamil Nadu soared high on Sunday. The two set a new benchmark in the men's long jump category of the 25th National Federation Cup Athletics Competition in Kozhikode.
The 20-year-old Jeswin Aldrin achieved a distance of 8.37m in his second attempt to win gold. His rival Sreeshankar, 23, landed at the 8.36m mark in his third attempt to settle for a silver. Both jumpers bettered the previous national record of 8.26m set last year.
Unfortunately, Jeswin Aldrin's performance wasn’t considered as a national record. As per the rules of the long jump competition, the tailwind at the time of executing the jump should not be more than two meters per second. It was +4.1 m/s at the time of Aldrin’s massive leap.
However, Sreeshankar’s performance of 8.36m will be considered a national record as the tailwind during his jump was +1.5 m/s, as per the Athletics Federation of India (AFI) results.
Away from the field events, the women’s 400-meter turned out to be a major attraction. Maharashtra’s Aishwarya Mishra crossed the finish line in an astonishing 51.18 seconds. Her gold medal-winning performance was the third-best by an Indian female 400m runner till date.
Assam’s sprinting prodigy Hima Das holds the national record of 50.79 seconds set in 2018. Way back in 2004, Manjeet Kaur had clocked 51.05 seconds.
Aishwarya was the favorite to win the title as her first-round time of 52.41 seconds on Saturday was the fastest amongst the finalists. Running in lane three, Aishwarya ran at a well-judged pace.
She was the clear winner at the 300m mark and crossed the finish line in 51.18 seconds, which was her personal best and fastest of the 2022 season.
In the short sprinting races, Odisha’s ace sprinter Dutee Chand won the women’s 100m title with a time of 11.49 seconds. Tamil Nadu’s Siva Kumar B won the men’s 100m title with a time of 10.37m.
Men’s 400m title went to Rajesh Ramesh. Ajay Kumar won the men’s 1500m gold. Lily Das took the gold in the women’s 1500m race while Rohit Yadav emerged as the champion in the men’s javelin throw event.