Murali Sreeshankar’s stellar form in the domestic circuit earlier this year has spilled onto the international stage. The 23-year-old won gold at the 12th International Jumping Meet in Kallithea, Greece on Wednesday, after leaping 8.31 m in his podium-topping campaign.

This came despite a field that included Tokyo Olympic and reigning World Indoor long jump champion Miltos Tentoglou of Greece, World Indoors silver medallist Thobias Montler from Sweden and Frenchman Erwan Konate, the Junior World Champion.

“It was a great feeling competing with this world class field. Great jumpers, world championship medallists. The atmosphere was also electrifying with all the jumpers pushing each other,” he said after the win.

Montler finished second with a jump of 8.27m and Jules Pommery of France took the bronze with a jump of 8.17m in the 10-man field at the World Athletics Continental Tour-Bronze event.

Sreeshankar had been in good form during the domestic season earlier this year. He won gold at the Indian Open Jumps Competition with a jump of 8.17m before breaking his own national record to set the new mark at 8.36m at the Federation Cup last month.

On Wednesday though, he did not have a bright start in Greece, beginning with attempts of 7.88m and 7.71m.

“I was struggling with my rhythm in the first two jumps, but had a decent one in the third,” he explained – he jumped 8.31 m in his third attempt.

“Again I couldn’t find much rhythm in fourth and fifth, but the sixth one was really good. I got the feeling that the board was approaching me so I could generate more. I was struggling a bit because I couldn’t do a full-approach jumping session before coming to Greece because the rain was affecting my training at home. It was unprecedented for it to rain in mid-May. But I got the rhythm in a few jumps. I’m happy to begin with 8.31.”

The accolade in Greece has made him upbeat for the targets he had set for himself at the start of the year.

“The main aim for this season is the World Championships and Commonwealth Games. I’m looking forward to that, and I feel I can get a medal at both,” he added.

His compatriot Jeswin Aldrin, meanwhile, was competing at an event in Huelva, Spain, and finished seventh after leaping 7.69m.

Sreeshankar's outdoor long jump results in 2022

Date Competition Cnt. Result Wind
01 MAR 2022 Indian Open Jumps Competitions, Thiruvanthapuram IND 8.17 NWI
02 APR 2022 National Federation Cup, CH Muhammed Koya Stadium, Thenhipalam IND 8.09 +1.1
03 APR 2022 National Federation Cup, CH Muhammed Koya Stadium, Thenhipalam IND 8.36 +1.5
25 MAY 2022 International Jumping Meeting , Kallithea, Athina GRE 8.31 +1.3
via World Athletics