Sudha wins Asian steeplechase gold

Sudha wins Asian steeplechase gold

Sudha Singh produced a superb performance to win gold in the women\'s 3,000 metre steeplechase at the Asian Athletics Championships here on Saturday.

Bhubaneswar: Sudha Singh produced a superb performance to win gold in the women's 3,000 metre steeplechase at the Asian Athletics Championships here on Saturday.

Sudha finished at the top of the podium with a time of nine minutes and 59.47 seconds. The experienced Indian produced a superb finishing sprint in the last round to leave the other runners trailing in her wake.

Hyo Gyong of North Korea finished a distant second with a time of 10:13.94 while Japan's Nana Sato took the bronze with 10:18.11.

Parul Chaudhary, the other Indian in the women's steeplechase final was fourth with a time of 10:22.99.Sudha, who has been battling injuries and health problems since the Rio Olympics last year, was happy with her performance."I was out of action for five months after the Olympics.

Even after I resumed training I could not go all out as I used to get dizziness quite frequently. I joined the national camp in December and slowly started to pick up form.

"The top runners of Asia had not come for this meet so the overall standard was below my level," Sudha told reporters.
"I have already competed in two Olympics and wanted to achieve something here. I want to win medals at the international level. My target was to do well at the Asian Championships and also at next month's World Championships."

Meanwhile, the men's 100m sprint event was mired in controversy after Malaysia's Khairul Hafiz, who was disqualified for a fault start, lodged a protest which resulted in the disqualification of another athlete.

Qatar's Tosin Joseph Onugode was disqualified on Saturday by the technical delegates on the ground after being found to have false-started upon examining the print outs of the reaction time of the competing athletes while coming out of the blocks.

Tosin is the brother of Femi Seun Onugode, the defending champion, who was stunned by Iran's Hassan Taftian in the competition. The disqualification did not change the medal standings as Tosin had finished fifth in Friday's race which had seen another athlete, China's Tang Xingqiang, also disqualified for fault start.

Malaysian Hafiz's demand in the protest application to re-run the race was rejected by the technical delegates.The Malaysian team also lodged a protest, citing doubts over the equipment used by the starting officials.However, the jury of technical delegates rejected it, saying that all the equipment used were certified by the world governing body, the IAAF.

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