Sri Lanka signed off from the Asian Athletic Grand prix with three medals which consisted of two Golds and a Silver in the third and the final leg held today(30th) at Taipei city in Chinese Taipei.
Sri Lanka’s golden boy in the first leg Indunil Herath brushed off his set back of the second leg and reclaimed the Gold he won at the first leg of the Grand prix in men’s 800m final. Indunil clocked a time of 1:51.34. It was a great performance from Indunil as he managed to be placed better than the Indian Jinson Johnson who claims a personal best of 1:45.98 and also represented India at the Summer Olympics at Rio.
800m turned out to be the event that paid Sri Lanka high returns as in the Women’s 800m Gayanthika Abeyrathne clinched Gold with a time of 2:03.87 while Nimali Liyanarachi was placed third with a time of 2:06.30 and gathered her second bronze of the grand prix. It’s the seasonal best time for both the runners. Gayanthika excelled managing to get the better of the Indian 800m specialist Tintu Luka who also is the Asian champion at the event. In the opening leg of the Grand prix Gayanthika won bronze while Nimali was placed 5th. In the second leg the runners exchanged places as Nimali won bronze while Gayanthika was placed 5th.
Sri Lanka’s ace sprinter Himasha Eshan missed out on a podium finish for the first time in the grand prix finishing 4th in the 100m final. Eshan won silver in the first two legs of the Grand prix finishing behind Hong Mi . Although placed 4th, Eshan managed his seasonal best time of 10.41secs and finished ahead of his nemesis in the first two legs Hong Mi who was placed 5th with a time of 10.42secs.
Rumeshika Ratnayake finished her Grand prix without a podium finish as she was placed 5th in the women’s 100m final with a time of 11.87secs. Rumeshika achieved her seasonal best in the second leg where she clocked a time 11.81secs. Viktoriya Zyabkina of Kazakhstan won gold with a time of 11.34.
Sri Lanka’s Javelin throwing duo Sumedha Ranasinghe and Waruna Lakshan yet again failed to make the podium finish as Sumedha was placed 7th with a best attempt of 72.23m achieved in the second attempt while Waruna Lakshan did not qualify in today’s event.
Triple jumper Sanjaya Jayasinghe was placed 6th in the men’s triple jump with a leap of 15.23m while Ajith Premakumara was placed 5th in the men’s 400m finals with a time of 47.89sec. In the women’s Shot Put Tharika Fernando secured the 5th place as her best attempt was measured at 14.15m. Tharanga Vindhini’s disappointing Grand prix continued as she failed to clear the minimum height of 1.65m at the third leg as well.
Sri Lanka won three medals in the first leg of the Grand prix with Indunil Herath winning gold while Himasha Eshan won silver and Gayanthika Abeyrathne won Bronze. In the second leg the local athletes only managed two medals as Eshan retained his silver while the bronze medal changed hands from Gayanthika to Nimali in the women’s 800m.
Sri Lanka will be happy with the performance in the final leg as they managed to win two gold medals and a bronze to sign off the Asian Grand prix.