Tokyo Olympian Dhanalakshmi Sekar clocked her personal best time of 22.89s to win the 200m sprint at the Qosanov Memorial 2022 athletics meet on Sunday.
Dhanalakshmi, who has been in good form this season, narrowly missed out on breaking a 20-year-old national record of 22.82s set by Saraswati Saha in 2002. Asian Games gold medallist Olga Safronova of Kazakhstan came second in 23.21s while Dutee Chand clocked 23.60s to finish third.
However, Dhanalakshmi will be competing only in the 100m at the Commonwealth Games 2022, which will be held in Birmingham, from July 28 to August 8.
Tokyo Olympian Tajinderpal Singh Toor, who was asked by the Athletics Federation of India (AFI) to prove his fitness and produce good results in competitions before the Commonwealth Games to seal his place in the team, did not start the event. In Tajinderpal’s absence, India’s Karanveer Singh (19.47m) claimed the top podium in the shot put event.
Apart from Tajinderpal Singh, hammer thrower Sarita Singh has also been named provisionally in India’s Commonwealth Games squad. She won the gold medal with a throw of 62.48m. Zarina Nosirjonova (57.68m) of Uzbekistan came second while her compatriot Elina Silyamieva (55.39m) came third.
Among Indian athletes who have already booked their berth for Birmingham 2022, women’s javelin thrower Annu Rani and women’s long jumper Ancy Sojan fine-tuned their preparations for the Commonwealth Games by winning gold medals in their respective events.
Annu Rani (62.29m) led India’s clean sweep in the women’s javelin throw with Shilpa Rani (56.16m) and Sanjana Choudhary (55.12m) following her on the podium.
Ancy Sojan won the long jump gold with a 6.44m leap. However, Eldhose Paul (16.55m) and Karthik Unnikrishnan (16.15m) were beaten by Azerbaijan’s Nazim Babayev (16.93m) for the top spot in the men’s triple jump, an olympics.com report said.
India concluded the Qosanov Memorial 2022 athletics meet, which is a World Athletics bronze-level event, with 28 medals, including 15 gold medals.