Vithya Ramraj started India’s potential medal run with a bronze in the women’s 400m hurdles final on Day 10 of the Asian Games. The 25-year-old equaled PT Usha’s nearly 40-year-old 400m hurdles record of 55.42s at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics yesterday and ran just 55.68s off that mark ) to claim bronze in the final.
Bahrain’s Mujidat Oluwakemi Adekowa won gold with a Games record time of 54.45 seconds, while China’s Mo Jiadi took silver with a time of 55.01 seconds, bettering the previous Games record of 55.09 seconds set by Kemi Adekowa at the 2014 Asian Games. .
With a reaction time of 0.188 seconds, Bithya was the third-best runner in the block, although the eventual gold and silver medalists had reaction times of 0.196 and 0.197 seconds, respectively. The Indian remained in the hunt until the final curve, where Moe pulled ahead of him and was himself behind Adekowa. There was a clear gap from first to second, second to third at the end, with Ramraj finishing 1.16 seconds ahead of Bahrain’s Aminat Oluwaseun Jamal in fourth.
Hailing from Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu, it was Bithia’s second medal at her debut Asian Games, the 25-year-old winning silver yesterday as part of the mixed 4x400m relay team, after Sri Lanka were disqualified for a lane violation after they advanced to silver on the bronze track.
Bithya, a three-time national champion, also competes in the 100m hurdles, where Jyoti Yaraji reigns supreme. A 25-year-old identical twin, Nithya is also an athlete.
Tejaswin Shankar, Parul Chowdhury, Praveen Chitharvel, Abdullah Abubakar and Annu Rani are the other medal hopefuls competing today.
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Asian Games Live, Day 10: India eyes multiple medals in athletics and boxing