The silver medal won by Indian 4x400m mixed relay quartet of Muhammed Anas, MR Poovamma, Hima Das and Arokia Rajiv at the 2018 Asian Games in Jakarta has officially been upgraded to gold, the Athletics Federation of India confirmed on Thursday.
The upgrade came after Bahrain’s Kemi Adekoya was handed a four-year ban by the Athletics Integrity Unit for failing a dope test.
On that account, India’s Anu Raghavan moved from fourth place to a bronze medal position in the women’s 400m hurdles, the federation informed.
The Bahrain squad, which finished first in the 4x400 mixed relay final, was disqualified.
Kazakhstan claim silver in the mixed relay while China move from fourth to third.
Athletics Federation of India President Adille J. Sumariwalla said AFI is delighted to see the World Athletics website ranking India’s 4x400m mixed relay squad as the winner of the Asian Games and Anu Raghavan as the bronze medal winner of the women’s 400m hurdles.
“The news comes as a fillip to us as we are aiming to build on the Asian Games showing and make a mark at the global level in the Olympic Games in Tokyo next year,” he was quoted as saying in the AFI release.
“The 4x400m relay squad will be particularly pleased that it now has two gold and a silver from Jakarta. We are confident that under coach Galina Bukharina’s guidance, the relay squad will perform well.”
The 4x400m mixed relay team of Anas, Poovamma, Das and Rajiv had finished second with 3:15.71. There had been controversy during the final as Hima Das was alleged to be obstructed by Oluwakemi Adekoya, who was sprawling on the track after the second baton exchange.
India now is the first winner of the event introduced at the Asian Games in 2018 in keeping with the international bid to find gender balance.
Anu Raghavan had clocked her fastest time of 2018, 56.77 seconds, in finishing fourth in the hurdles final while her team-mate Jauna Murmu’s second fastest (57.48) gave her the fifth place. Adekoya’s disqualification saw them move to higher places.
Adekoya’s 400m hurdles title went to Vietnam’s Quach Thi Lan, while Aminat Yusuf Jamal of Bahrain was awarded silver and Anu won bronze.
Bahrain’s athletics programme came under further scrutiny in June when Salwa Eid Naser, the 2019 world silver medallist at 400m, was provisionally banned after failing to make herself available for doping tests.
(With AFP inputs)