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Sinimol Paulose wins 800m gold in Doha

Source: PTI
Last updated on: February 17, 2008 11:55 IST
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India reaped a rich harvest, winning three gold metals out of nine on offer on the final day of the third Asian Indoor Athletics Championships, with Sinimol Paulose blazing away to glory.

Sinimol set the track at the Aspire Sports Academy in Doha, Qatar, ablaze to win the women's 800m with a championship record timing of 2:03.43 seconds for her second gold of the championship.

Compatriot Sushma Devi made it a one-two for India with a personal best time of 2:04.66s while Matsko Mragarita of Kazakhstan was third with 2:04.85s.

Sinimol's effort was enough to see her qualify for the World Indoor Athletics Championship in Valencia next month as she crossed the 2:04.00s qualification standard.

Asian Indoor Games champion P J Vinod then lived up to his reputation to pocket the men's heptathlon gold with 5,561 total points ahead of Sephrzad Hadi (5515) of Iran and Hiromasa Tanaka (5306) of Japan, to become the most enduring athlete of the championship.

The Indian camp's most satisfying moment was, however, the gold-winning effort of women's 4x400m relay quartet of Mandeep Kaur, Manjeet Kaur, Sini Jose and Chitra Soman in championship record timing of 3:37.46s.

Kazaksthan finished second with 3:38.10s while Thailand took bronze in 3:43.22s.

India claimed the silver in the corresponding men's race with T Aboobacker, Vinay Chaudhary, Gurvinder Pal Singh Bhullar and Virender Kumar Pankaj coming home in 3:16.53s behind Saudi Arabia (3:14.25) and ahead of Qatar (3:17.93).

India won seven medals (three gold and four silver) on Saturday to swell the medal tally to 15.

Rajeev Ramesan and Sajeesh Joseph, however, disappointed by finishing fourth and sixth respectively in the men's 800m.

The duo opted for a leading strategy to win the race but faded out later. Rajeev clocked 1:49.46s while Sajeesh came home in 1:50.10s.

Bahrain's Kamal Yusuf Saad (1:48.03s) won the gold while Iran's Ehsan (1:48.68s) and Japan's Masato Yokota (1:49.30s) pocketed silver and bronze respectively.

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