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With one throw, Vikas Gowda raises visions of medal in Commonwealth games

Thursday, 31 July 2014 - 7:10am IST | Place: Glasgow | Agency: dna

Vikas Gowda needed just one throw to assure himself of a berth in the men's discus throw finals and a shot at his second Commonwealth games medal. The Mysore-born Gowda, who now lives and trains in Maryland, United States, hurled the disc to 64.32 metres, the best among all the qualifiers to install himself as one of the favourites in the event.

Also making the final was women's high jumper, Sahana Kumar, who cleared 1.81m. Tintu Lukka, a ward of PT Usha made the semifinals of the 800m, clocking 2:02.74, finishing fourth in third heat. Luka has a season's best of 2:00.56.

Gowda, a two-time World Championships and one-time Olympic finalist, won a silver at the 2010 Commonwealth Games and was third at the 2010 Asian Games. His only gold has been the lacklustre Asian Championships in Pune in 2013, where he threw the disc to 64.90m. This year Gowda was second at the 2014 Doha Diamond League meeting with 63.32m.

His personal best of 66.28m, also the Indian National record was achieved in 2012 and it could win him a medal here. Gowda's season-best 65.62 compares well with one of his main challengers, Australia's Julian Wruck's season best of 65.01m. Wruck, however has a personal best of 68.16m.

The defending men's champion, Benn Harradine of Australia, the first indigenous athlete, competing for Australia in athletics, will be back to try and win a second time. Harradine won the Melbourne World Challenge this year with 63.59m.

In women's long jump, however, India's Mayookha Johny failed to qualify for the final round after finishing eighth in the qualification Group A with a disappointing effort of 6.11m.




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