International Richa Mishra rose to the challenge from young Arti Ghorpade midway through the final lap in the women’s 200m backstroke. With both swimmers going stroke for stroke, Richa finished with a record time of 2:24.22 seconds while Arti touched home in 2:24.39, both bettering the previous mark credited to Shikha Tandon (2:26:66 set in 2005).
Sandeep Sejwal improved his own 200m breaststroke National best (2:16:37) with an effortless 2:15:77 on the opening day of the 66th Enerzal Senior National Aquatics.
Sejwal had earlier starred in Railways Sports Promotion Board (RSPB) national record breaking effort in 4x100 medley relay.
“Swimming against the clock is now a routine for me,” said the Western Railway swimmer.
The first Indian to attain ‘B’ qualification in breakstroke for London Olympics 2012, he awaits another chance to overcome the shock of finding his name missing from FINA’s list of 900 swimmers cleared to take part.
A.P. Gagan finished second in the men’s 800m freestyle, timing 8:23:86 behind favourite Saurabh Sangvekar (8:21:28), both far from Sangvekar’s national mark of 8:12:57.
Veerdawal Khade’s eagerness to make a splash in the pool was spoiled by evening thundershowers, forcing the men’s 50m butterfly to be postponed by a day.
The results: Men: 800m freestyle: 1. Saurabh Sangvekar (Kar) 8:21:28, 2. A.P. Gagan (Kar) 8:23:86, 3. Mandar Divase (Police) 8:40:37.
200m breaststroke: 1. Sandeep Sejwal (RSPB) 2:15:77 (NR), 2. Puneet Rana (Pol) 2;23:94, 3. Anoop Augustine (RSPB) 2:26:30. Previous mark 2:16:37.
200m backstroke: 1. Rohit Havaldar (Kar) 2:11:06, 2. Rohit Imoliya (MP) 2:13:19, 3. Pranam B (Kar) 2:14:56.
4x100m medley relay: 1. RSPB (Turbu V, Sajan Prakash, Sandeep Sejwal, Sarma Nair) 3:54:76 (NR), 2. Tamil Nadu (M Balakrishnan, N Arvind, J Agnishwar, Jaywant Vijay Kumar) 3:57:31, 3. Karnataka (Rohit Havalkar, Rakshith Shetty, Likith S P, Aaron D’Souza) 3:58:01. (Prev mark 3:56:06).
Women: 200m breastroke: 1. Poorva Shetye (Mah) 2:49:37, 2. A Jayaveena (TN) 2:49:39, 3. M Raghavi (TN) 2:52:11.
200m backstroke: 1. Richa Mishra (Pol) 2:24:22 (NR), 2. Arti Ghorpade (Mah) 2:24:39 (BMR), 3. Ananya Panigrahi (Mah) 2:30:86. Prev mark 2:26:66.
50m butterfly: 1. Jyotsana Pansare (Mah) 00:29:31, 2. Shivani Kataria (Har) 00:29:97 and Talasha Prabhu (Goa) 00:29:97.
Keywords: Enerzal Senior National Aquatics