Four National records sunk
On a day when four National records were sunk, the most celebrated mark was achieved by Saurabh Sangvekar of Karnataka in the men's 800m freestyle. The tall 17-year-old Thane-born lad produced the day's first mark of 8:12.57s on Wednesday morning that turned out to be the best Indian time.
It was only last month that he managed to obliterate the previous best mark of 8:23.08 held by Mandar A. Divese at the seventh Asian age group meet at Jakarta by clocking 8:18.40s.
He lowered it further on the opening day of the five-day 65th National aquatic meet at the Veer Budhu Bhagat Aquatic Stadium. The National meet record stood in Divese's favour at 8:23.08s.
Sandeep Sejwal of Railways swimmer produced the second individual National record in his pet event 200m breaststroke with a time of 2:16.37s.
This improved upon his own mark of 2:17.92 set at Jaipur last year.
His effort was all the more laudable, for there was none to push him as it was a start to finish effort.
The other two National best came in the 4 x 100m medley relay events. The Karnataka quartet of Kshipra Mahajan, Bhoomi Motwani, Surabhi Tipre and Pooja R. Alva, clocked 4:36.37s to pick up gold and in the process improved up on the existing record of 4:39.62 set by their teammates in 2009.
The Railway foursome of Praveen Tokas, Sandeep Sejwal, Sarma S.P. Nair and Tarun Tokas, timed 3:56.06s to upstage the previous best of 3:56.98s held by last year's relay teammates.
M. Raghavi of Tamil Nadu won her third straight gold medal in women's 200m breaststroke with a time of 2:48.39s.
In the process she pushed Poorva Shetye of Maharashtra to the silver position. In a late burst, A.V. Jayaveena of Tamil Nadu grabbed the bronze medal. Raghavi thus gave TN its first gold of the National.
The results: Men: 800m freestyle:1. Saurabh Sangvekar (Kar) 8:12.57s (NR, old 8:23.08 by Mandar Divese of Police, 2009), 2. Mandar Divese (Pol) 8:34.47, 3. Merwyn Chen (Rly) 8:38.87.
200m backstroke:1. Rehan Poncha (Kar) 2:07.85s, 2. Rohit R. Havaldar (Kar) 2:08.17, 3. Praveen Tokas (Rly) 2:13.38;200m breaststroke:1. Sandeep Sejwal (Rly) 2:16.37s (NR, old 2:17.92 by Sejwal, 2010), 2. Anoop Augustine (Rly) 2:26.98, 3. M. Arvind (Kar) 2:30.66.
50m butterfly:1. Sarma S.P. Nair (Rly) 26.13s, 2. Arjun Muralidharan (Pol) 26.35, 3. Anshul Kothari (Guj) 26.39;4 x 100m medley relay:1. Railways 3:56.06s (NR, old 3:56.98 by Railways, 2010), 2. Karnataka 4:01.14, 3. Bengal 4:27.16.
Women: 200m backstroke:1. Arti Ghorpade (Mah) 2:28.59s, 2. Ananya Panigrahi (Mah) 2:29.34, 3. Meghanaa Sreevatsa (Kar) 2:35.79;200m breaststroke:1. M. Raghavi (TN) 2:48.39s, 2. Poorva Shetye (Mah) 2:48.57, 3. A.V. Jayaveena (TN) 2:51.45.
50m butterfly:1. Pooja R. Alva (Kar) 29.56s, 2. Talasha Prabhu (Goa) 29.86, 3. Fariha Zaman (Kar) 30.16;4 x 100m medley relay:1. Karnataka 4:36.37s (NR, old 4:39.62, 2009), 2. Maharashtra 4:37.94, 3. Tamil Nadu 4:58.12.
Keywords: Saurabh Sangvekar