Qatar narrowly missed out on two more gold medals to finish sixth in the standings as the Asian Junior Athletics Championships concluded in the Japanese city of Gifu yesterday.
Japan topped with 14 gold while China with 11 and India with five finished second and third respectively. Chinese Taipei were fourth with four gold medals, while Sri Lanka were fifth.
Qatar and Sri Lanka won three gold medals each, but the latter took fifth position by virtue of their number of silver medals – four, against Qatar’s three.
Yesterday, Qatar won two more silver medals – in the 400m hurdles and the high jump.
In the 400m hurdles, Japan’s Yusuke Shirao took the gold in a time of 50.52secs, just beating Qatar’s Bassem Mohamed who clocked 50.55.
Japan’s Kyohei Tomori also also won the high jump, leaping 2.16m, while the silver went to Qatar’s Nuh Abdulkadir Ibrahim who jumped 2.14m.
Running at the front for much of the race, 18-year-old Nozomi Tanaka dominated the women’s 3,000m as she cruised to a 9:04.36 win, clipping nearly six seconds from the previous championships record of 9:10.17 set by Lan Lixin of China in 1997. Tanaka, who has an 8:54.27 lifetime best set last year, was eighth over the distance at the 2016 World U20 Championships in Bydgoszcz.
Yuna Wada was second in 9:14.13 to secure a 1-2 finish for Japan while further back, Liu Fang of China took bronze in 9:35.69.
Another meet record came in the penultimate event, the women’s 4x400m relay, and again courtesy of the host nation. Ayano Shiomi, Kasumi Yoshida, Natsumi Murakami and Ayako Kawata teamed to take a 3:38.20 win, shattering the previous mark of 3:39.24, set by China in 1997, by more than a second. Kawata and Shiomi finished first and third in the 800m on Saturday.
India finished second in 3:41.11.
Ajeet Kumar of India won the men’s 5,000m in 14:15.24, a big personal best for the 19-year-old. Ren Tazawa of Japan was second in 14:17.26 with Iranian Seyedamir Zamanpour clocking 14:25.25, also a personal best, to round out the podium.
Another Indian victory came in the men’s triple jump courtesy of Kamalraj Kanagaraj, who nabbed gold with a 15.75m leap in the opening round. The 18-year-old has a 16.41m best from last year.
Japan’s Kyohei Tomori topped a personal best 2.16m to win the men’s high jump over Nuh Abdulkadir Ibrahim Anuh of Qatar, who topped out at 2.14m.

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