Star sprinter Dutee Chand smashed her own national record, clocking 11.22 seconds in the women’s 100m semifinals on her way to the gold medal at the 59th National Open Athletics Championships in Ranchi on Friday.
A fortnight after failing to reach 100m semis at the World Championships in Doha, the 23-year-old surpassed her previous best timing of 11.26s which she had set at the Asian Championships in April this year.
While she had equalled Rachita Mistry’s 11.26-second effort at the Asian Championship, Dutee’s time of 11.22 seconds in the semifinals on Friday finally made her the sole owner of the National record.
Dutee later clocked 11.25 seconds in the final to claim the gold, with Archana Suseendran and Himashree Roy taking silver and bronze respectively.
“A couple of days ago, I had the wrong belief that my body was tired at the end of the season. I recovered well to be able to break the last national mark twice this evening,” said Dutee who clocked a disappointing 11.48s in Doha.
Her state-mate Amiya Kumar Malik, who has been struggling to find his rhythm the whole season, won the bragging rights as the fastest man in the National Open.
He won the men’s 100m in 10.46 seconds, breaking the beam a hundredth of a second ahead of Malaysia’s Jonathan AnakNyepa. Gurindervir Singh (Punjab) took the bronze medal by a margin of 0.0044 seconds from his team-mate Harjit Singh.
In other events, MP Jabir (AFI) rewrote the men’s 400m hurdles meet record, winning the final in 49.41 seconds.
He improved on the mark of 49.67 seconds set by Ayyasamy Dharun (Tamil Nadu) last year.
Dharun himself, running only his third hurdles race since recovering from an injury, will be pleased that he clocked 49.50s for the second place, leaving T Santhosh Kumar (Services) in the third place.
Earlier, in a close finish, Haryana’s Rahul Rohilla won the men’s 20m race walking ahead of the more seasoned K Ganapathi (AFI) and Sandeep Kumar (Services).