India’s Sunil Kumar created history by bagging the country’s first-ever gold medal in men’s decathlon. The 19-year-old won the gold medal with 7,003 points at the Asian Under-20 Athletics Championships in Yecheon, Republic of Korea on June 6.
Kumar suffered a setback when a South Korean airline and Air India barred him from carrying his pole vault due to technical issues due to its five-metre length. He then borrowed the pole vault from the contest organisers and won the 10-event competition with a personal best tally of 7,003 points on the penultimate day of the competition. He won 100m hurdles, discus throw and javelin throw to compensate for the below-par show in the other events, and acquire the gold medal in the competition completed over two days.
In women’s high jump, Pooja won a silver after clearing 1.82 m. Bushra Khan also won a silver in the women’s 3000 m race, clocking 9:41.47s. The Indian women’s 4×100 m relay team took bronze with a time of 45.36 s.
On the opening day of the championship, Rezoana Mallick Heena and Bharatpreet Singh won a gold medal each in women’s 400 m and men’s discus throw, respectively. Shot putter Siddharth Choudhary also won gold on June 5 with a personal best throw of 19.52 m.