India’s middle-distance runners PU Chitra and G Lakshmanan bagged gold medals at the 5th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan on Tuesday, increasing India’s overall tally to three golds at the event.
The 22-year-old Chitra, who was the Asian Championships winner in Bhubaneswar recently, repeated her feat at the indoor meet, by clocking 4:27.77 in the 1500m to finish ahead of the pack by four seconds. Kyrgyzstan’s Gulshanoi Satarova and Arina Kleshchukova finished second and third respectively.
Lakshmanan, who finished first in the 3000m heats, improved his timing from 8:50.81 to 8:02.30 in the final to finish ahead of Saudi Arabia’s Tariq Ahmed Alamri and Iran’s Hossein Keyhani, clinching yet another continental gold medal.
The 27-year-old Lakshmanan was a double gold medalist (5000m and 10000m) at the Asian championships this year in Bhubaneshwar. He also won a silver and bronze medals at the previous edition in 2015.
18-year-old wrestler Dharmender added a bronze to India’s medal tally on Tuesday after he lost in the semi-finals of the freestyle 70 kg category to Turkmenistan’s Ýagsymyrat Annamyradow. He had earlier defeated Pakistan’s Muhammad Sharif in the quarter-final to ensure a medal at the event.
Earlier on Monday, Purnima Hembram opened India’s gold medal tally at the event by winning gold in the pentathlon event.
India’s overall tally now stands at seven medals, making them tenth on the table.