Annu Rani clinches gold in women's javelin, joins Neeraj Chopra in elite bracket
Annu Rani has become the second Indian javelin thrower after Neeraj Chopra to have won an Asian Games gold at the event.
India's Annu Rani on Tuesday won her second Asian Games medal, and her first gold, in women's javelin throw in Hangzhou. Annu threw the javelin 62.92m in her fourth attempt which helped her jump to the lead. Sri Lanka's Dilhani Lekamge won silver with a best throw of 61.57m while Lyu Huihui (61.29m) of China won bronze.
This is Annu's second Asian Games medal. The 31-year-old had won bronze in Incheon in 2014 with a best throw of 59.53m. She ended up finishing sixth at the 2018 Asian Games where Neeraj Chopra became the first Indian to win gold in javelin by winning the men's event. Annu's gold is the second from track and field for India on Tuesday and fourth from athletics overall. Parul Chaudhary earlier won the women's 5000m event, adding to the silver she won at the women's 3000m steeplechase final on Monday.
Annu threw 56.99m in her first attempt and followed that up with a throw of 61.28m. She then threw 59.24m before flinging 62.92m in her fourth attempt. That gave her the lead and she followed that up with a throw of 57.66m. Her final throw was a foul but her gold medal had already been confirmed by then.
It added to the golds won by by shotputter Tajinderpal Singh Toor and men's 3000m steeplechase winner Avinash Sable. Toor defended his Asian Games gold while Sable smashed the Games record to cruise to a comfortable win.
A productive day for India
Annu's gold squared off a highly productive day for India in track and field. Indians medalled in six of the eight finals that they qualified for. Silvers were won by Tejaswin Shankar in men's deacthlon and Mohammed Afsal in men's 800m. Meanwhile Praveen Chithravel won bronze in men's triple jump while Abdulla Aboobacker finished millimeters behind him at fourth. Vithya Ramraj also won bronze in women's 400m hurdles. Like Parul, this is her second medal in Hangzhou this year as she was also part of the Indian mixed relay team that won silver on Monday.
Tejaswin's silver was India's first men's decathlon medal since 1974. Vijay Singh Chauhan was the last Indian to win a decathlon medal in Asian Games in 1974, while the national record belonged to Bharatinder Singh (7,658 points).
In men's 400m hurdles, Yashas Palaksha (49.39) and Santhosh Kumar (49.41) finished fifth and sixth respectively in the final. In women's high jump final, Pooja and Rubina Yadav ended their campaign at the sixth and ninth positions respectively.