Aruna conquers Asia as Sri Lanka grab 4 medals

Asian Junior Athletic Championship 2018


Sri Lanka won 4 medals, consisting of a Gold and three Silvers on day 2 of the Asian Junior Athletic Championship (AJAC) held in Gifu, Japan. It was a perfect day for the Lankans with all their participants for the day finishing on the podium.

Golden boy Aruna rewrites history

Aruna Darshana, the talented young quarter-miler who has been making waves in the local circuit as one to look out for, continued on his merry way, stealing the limelight on the track.  Aruna won Gold in the Men’s 400m, clocking a time of 45.79secs and smashing his previous personal best of 46.55secs which is also a Sri Lanka junior record. It was a terrific performance from the youngster as he bettered the previous championship record of 45.85secs held by Qatari Salah El Din Bakar, which was recorded in the 1999 edition which was held in Singapore. It is the first time any Sri Lankan athlete has dipped under 46secs in the 400m since Rohan Pradeep Kumara did so in 2006.

It’s true that Aruna Darshana hogged the limelight with his record-breaking run in the 400m but Pasindu Kodikara made sure that Aruna was not alone on the podium, running a brilliant race to win the silver medal in the 400m final.  Pasindu paced himself exceptionally well to see off the challenge of Syujii Moro of Japan, who finished the race in third place clocking 47.08secs. Both Pasindu and Aruna are part of the Sri Lanka Men’s 4X400m relay team and will be determined to secure the top honors after their inspiring performance in the individual event.

Here’s a look at South Asian Junior Athletic Championship 2018which was held in Colombo where Aruna won Gold in the 400m in an all Sri Lankan podium withe Pasindu coming in second.

SAJC2018 Men’s 400m Final

Uploaded by on 2018-05-06.

Silver for Dilishi in the Women’s 400m

Dilishi Kumarasinghe, despite running her personal best time of 54.03secs in the 400m, had to be satisfied with a Silver medal finish with the Olympian Jisna Mathew of India winning gold in the event clocking a time of 53.26secs. Jisna who was a member of the Indian 4X400m relay at the 2016 Rio Olympics was quick out of the blocks and managed to cruise her way through the first 200m, establishing a massive lead over the rest of the pack. But young Dilishi was not going to go down without a fight as she pushed the Indian till the end which brought, personal best for both the Indian and Dilishi. Jui-Hsuan Yang of Chinese Taipei was placed third, clocking 54.74secs.

Dilishi Kumarasinghe was outrun by Indian Olympian Jisna Mathew in the Women’s 400m final with both athletes running their personal best time.

Personal best and Silver for Amasha in the 100m

Amasha finishing her race fractions behind Feng of China

Undisputed junior sprint queen of South Asia, Amasha De Silva finished second in the final of the women’s 100m, clocking her personal best time of 11.71secs to win Silver behind China’s Lulu Feng who finished with a time of 11.68secs. Amasha had a slow start in the final similar to the heat but managed to speed up after the halfway mark, challenging the Chinese athlete till the finish line, but unfortunately had to be satisfied with a second-place finish. Japanese athlete Mei Kodama was placed third, clocking 11.98secs to secure the bronze medal.

It was a fabulous day for the Sri Lankan juniors, who managed to secure medals in all the events they participated in today. Tomorrow (9th) the Sri Lankans will be competing in 4 finals where the Men’s & Women’s 800m Walala duo, Harsha Karunarathne and Dilishi Kumarasinghe are expected to do well and possibly aim for Gold.

09th June schedule for Sri Lankan athletes

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