After two failed attempts and an average effort of 16.36 in the third,during the lst leg of the Indian Grand Prix at NIS Patiala,triple-jumper Renjith Maheshwary was returning to get ready for the fourth attempt,when he was stopped by his Italian coach Evegene Shivilli. Evegene who was sitting in the stands and closely watching Renjith didn’t seem too pleased with his performance. In his broken English and with the use of sign language,he told Renjith to add another yard of pace in his sprint and also get a clean take-off. Renjith nodded and returned to his position. But Renjith once again faced the heat from the coach as the irked coach reprimanded him for drinking tea before his fourth attempt. What followed next was a jump of 16.78,which was 0.11m better than his performance. However,it was still 7 cm short of the B Qualification standard for the upcoming world championships in Moscow in August. And his effort to reach the 17 metre mark ended when his last two attempts also resulted in fouls.
“The last jump certainly would have been more than 17 if it was not a foul. However,I am satisfied with my performance and there are six more competitions to go before the major events. I am certainly looking forward to the Federation Cup where I expect to do much better,” said Maheshwary,who had a rather forgettable outing at London Olympics with three fouls. He and Arpinder Singh,who had shocked him enroute to the gold in National Games two years ago,were the only two to breach the 16 metre mark.
Also,coming from a rather below average throw of 18.12m in the last leg,shot putter Om Prakash Singh Karhana improved his performance by throwing the ball to 18.65 metre though it was one and a half metre less than what is required to qualify for world championship at Moscow. Prakash blamed it on the cold and also for starting praticing late. “I got married in December last year and I started practicing only in January. I was suffering from cold in the last couple of days and I couldn’t perform well because of that,” he said,adding,”My aim is to once again breach the 20m mark which I managed to did last year at Hungary. I did well today and am slowly returning to my best. The next few events would be important before the Commonwealth and Asian Games next year. I am participating in Diamond League too,” said Prakash.
Meanwhile,MR Poovamma,who missed last leg due to typhoid,showed she was still good enough by winning the women 400m race by clocking 53.59 metre,which was 2.54s less than the national record in the name of Manjeet Kaur. “Due to typhoid,I could not train much and I started training only a week ago. There is still many more competitions to come and hopefully my performance will pick up eventually,” he said.
In absence of Joseph Abraham,Railways Jithin Paul sparkled with a winning time of 51.72s in 400m hurdles. Devender Singh maintained his dominance in javelin throw with a winning mark of 76.77m. Arokia Rajiv won gold in men 400m race with a timing of 47.22s.