Thu, 30 Nov 2023

Hangzhou [China], September 30 (ANI): Indian athlete Kiran Baliyan, who put an end to India's 72-year-long medal drought in women's shot put, confessed to being unaware of this historic achievement.

Kiran secured a bronze medal in women's shot put, marking the first track and field honor for India at the Asian Games. Her best throw of 17.36m occurred during her third attempt.

After making history, Kiran expressed her joy at contributing to India's medal tally on the opening day of athletics.

Surprisingly, she revealed that she had no prior knowledge of the lengthy medal drought. She told reporters, "It was the first day of athletics and I am thrilled to have opened our account on the very first day in athletics and also about the fact that it came in shot put. I didn't know that I was the first in 72 years to become the first woman to clinch a medal. I was told later on that when I did it. I want more medals to come in the coming days."Before Kiran's bronze medal finish, India's last medal in the women's shot put came way back in the inaugural edition of the Asian Games in 1951 at New Delhi when Barbara Webster also won a bronze medal.

China dominated the podium standings with Lijiao Gong and Jiayuan Song winning the gold and silver medals, with scores of 19.58m and 18.92m respectively.

India's Manpreet Kaur failed to get a podium finish as she ended in the 5th spot with a distance of 16.25m.

India's Tanya Chaudhary and Rachna Kumari finished seventh and ninth respectively in the final of the women's hammer throw.

Tanya threw to a distance of 60.50m while Rachna managed 58.13m. China's Zheng Wang and Jie Zhao won gold and silver respectively while Taehui Kim won bronze for South Korea.

Zheng Wang registered a throw of 71.53m while Jie Zhao clinched the second spot with a throw of 69.44m.

Earlier in the day, India's Muhammad Ajmal Variyathodi qualified for the final of the men's 400m after finishing second in Heat 2 with a time of 45.76s. Ajmal will be back in action for the medal on Saturday.

Muhammad Anas Yahiya finished third in Heat 1 with a time of 46.29s and could not qualify for the final. (ANI)

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