Hima ends campaign after anchoring relay team to junior national record

Tampere (Finland), July 14:
Newly-crowned world U-20 qurtermile event champion Hima Das today ended her campaign after anchoring the Indian women’s 4x400m relay quartet to a junior national record, though the quartet failed to qualify for the final round here.
The Indian women’s 4x400m relay team comprising S Venkatsen, Jisna Mathew, Ritika and Hima clocked 3 minute 39.10 seconds to finish fourth in heat number two, thus failing to qualify for the final round.
The first two in each of the three heats and the next two fastest teams qualify for the finals.
Despite failing to qualify for the finals, the Indian quartet bettered the earlier national U-20 record of 3:40.50 set in 2002 in Bangkok.
Sahil Silwal missed out on a bronze after finishing fourth in men’s javelin throw. He came up with a best throw of 72.83m in his last attempt. The bronze winner — Tzuriel Pedigo of USA — cleared 73.27.
In other events, Priyadarshini Suresh crashed out of the women’s triple jump event with a below par 12.50m effort to finish 10th in the Group A qualification round.
The 31 member Indian team ended its campaign with one gold medal won by Hima in women’s 400m race.
The 4x400m relay race was the last event for Hima, who had clinched the women’s 400m gold on July 12 to become the only Indian to win a yellow metal in a track event in a world level competition.
Besides 400m, Hima has also qualified for the 200m race in the upcoming Asian Games after winning gold in the National Inter State Championships in Guwahati last month, but she is not running for this event here.
She will return to her training base near the Czech Republic capital, Prague, to continue her preparations for the Asian Games where she will hope to stand on the podium in the 400m event.
But the 18-year-old athlete from Nagaon district in Assam, known as ‘Dhing Express’, will have a world class opponent in Bahrain’s Salwa Eid Naser, who is the Asian season leader and has run four times below the 50 second mark last month.
Hima is in the second spot behind Naser with her personal best of 51.13 she ran in Guwahati last month.
In the 200m event, Hima is at number four among season leaders in Asia after her 23.10 effort in Guwahati. Viktoriya Zyabkina of Kazakhstan is the Asian season leader with 22.73 in this event. (PTI)