Chinese triple jumper Xie Limei once again cornered the limelight as she posted a season best of 14.16 metres in the third and final leg of the Asian Grand Prix circuit in Wujiang, China, on Sunday (29 May).
The 23-year-old Chinese who had recorded a 14.06 metres mark in the previous leg at Kunshan, stretched her best for the season to 14.16. She won two of the three legs, the first one having gone to team-mate and Asian leader for the season, Li Yanmei.
Li Yanmei also went past the 14-metre mark for the second place, with 14.05, while Indian Mayookha Johny had a national record at 14.02, the first Indian to go past the 14-metre mark.
Seven athletes made a sweep of the titles in the three legs, each leg offering prizes of $1500, $800 and $500 for the top three places. In order to qualify for the prize money an athlete had to compete in all the three legs.
From the eight who came through with a “clean slate” at the end of the Kunshan leg, the one to go out was Chinese sprinter Chen Qiang who was disqualified in the 100m. Chinese Taipei’s Lai Chun Ho was also disqualified, leaving another Taipei man, Tsui Chi Ho to edge Chinese Liang Jiahong for the top place in 10.45s.
The seven to complete the series on an all-win note were, Iran’s Sajad Moradi (800m), Chinese Jiang Fan (110m Hurdles) and Chinese Zhang Guowei (High Jump) among men, and Uzbek Guzel Khubbieva (100m), Kazakh Margarita Matsko (800m), Uzbek Svetlana Radzivil (High Jump) and Chinese Yang Fei (Discus Throw), among women.
Xie Limei’s start was sedate, but she struck it rich in the third round with her 14.16 metres, a top-20 mark in the world this season. Li Yanmei had started with 14.05 but could not better that effort. She leads the Asian lists for the season with her 14.35 recorded at the Samsung Diamond League meeting in Shanghai on 15 May when she finished second.
Johny’s national record was on expected lines, though a breakthrough with beyond 14 metres must have surpassed many expectations. Having done two consecutive 13.71m in the first two legs, just a centimetre short of the Indian record, the 22-year-old Indian was poised to come up with a big one. She did that on her last jump after opening with 13.97. In between she had four fouls.
At 800m, Iran’s Sajad Moradi had a tougher task than he had faced in the last two legs in warding off the challenge from Indian Ghamanda Ram. With the second Indian, Sajeesh Joseph, also making a determined effort down the finishing straight, the Asian Games champion struggled a bit, but came through with a modest 1:49.27, with Ram at 1:49.45 and Joseph at 1:49.74 in a six-man field.
There was not much of a challenge to the likes of Chinese Jiang Fan, in the 110m Hurdles who in a time of 13.52 sec was the clear winner over Thai Jamras Rittidet who clocked 14.09.
Similarly China’s Zhang Guowei, in High Jump was hardly pressed with a 2.24m win. Zhang after one failure at 2.28m went for 2.31 in his last two attempts, but failed. Team-mate Jin Qichao cleared 2.20 on his second attempt and in an effort to overtake another Chinese, Wang Chen, who had cleared 2.20 on his first attempt, passed 2.24 and went for 2.28, without success. Wang Chen claimed the second place.
The younger of the Samimi brothers, Mahmoud, produced the best Discus mark of the Asian GP series, 63.21 metres to wrest the title back for Iran. Chinese Wu Jian, who had surprised the Iranians, in the second leg, came second this time with 62.40. Mohammed Samimi was just two centimetres short while claiming third.
There was no stopping veteran Khubbieva in the women’s dash, though she was able to clock only a 11.48sec, her second best in the three legs. She had won the opener at 11.45.
Uzbek Radzivil was also not at her best in women’s High Jump, clearing only 1.88m compared to her second-leg effort of 1.92. Beyond 1.88 there was no one to push her, though, and that must have kept her rather quiet at her next height of 1.92.
The Japanese women, as had been the practice throughout the series, only ran the heats of the 4x100m relay, and pulled out of the final. Obviously they are preparing for the Asian championships at home and the World Championships in Daegu, not to speak of trying to post good qualifying times for the Olympics. They returned timings of 43.65s, 44.30s and 43.89s in the three legs.
By an IAAF Correspondent
100m: 1. Tsu Chi Ho (Tpe) 10.45, 2. Liang Jiahong (Chn) 10.46, 3. Wachar Sondee (Tha) 10.51;
400m: 1. Sajad Hashemiahan (Iri) 46.55, 2. Chen Jianxin (Chn) 46.65, 3. Prasanna Amarasekara (Sri) 47.03;
800m: 1. Sajad Moradi (Iri) 1:49.27, 2. Ghamanda Ram (Ind) 1:49.45, 3. Sajeesh Joseph (Ind) 1:49.74;
110m Hurdles: 1. Jiang Fan (Chn) 13.52, 2. Jamras Rittidet (Tha) 14.09, 3. Mohammad Sajjad (Pak) 15.46;
High Jump: 1. Zhang Guowei (Chn) 2.24, 2. Wang Chen (Chn) 2.20, 3. Jin Qichao (Chn) 2.20;
Long Jump: 1. Yun Zhiming (Chn) 7.86, 2. Suprana Sukhasvasti (Tha) 7.62, 3. Konstantin Safronov (Kaz) 7.58;
Triple Jump: 1. Cao Shuo (Chn) 16.86, 2. Kim Duk-Hyun (Kor) 16.77, 3. Li Yanxi (Chn) 16.64;
Discus Throw: 1. Mahmoud Samimi (Iri) 63.21, 2. Wu Jian (Chn) 62.40, 3. Mohammed Samimi (Iri) 62.38;
4x100m relay: Korea 40.07, 2. Thailand 40.26, 3. Tang Yik Chun (HKG) 40.73.
100m: 1. Guzel Khubbieva (Uzb) 11.48, 2. Wei Yongli (Chn) 11.62, 3. Wisil Toea (PNG) 11.67;
400m: 1. Marina Maslyonko (Kaz) 52.72s, 2. Chen Jingwen (Chn) 53.24, 3. Chen Yanmei (Chn) 53.64;
800m: 1. Margarita Matsko (Kaz) 2:02.79, 2. Anna Sidorova (Uzb) 2:03.93, 3. Li Yong (Chn) 2:07.63;
100m Hurdles: 1. Natalya Ivoninskaya (Kaz) 13.45, 2. Sun Yawei (Chn) 13.49, 3. Anastasiya Supronova (Kaz) 13.66;
High Jump: 1. Svetlana Radzivil (Uzb) 1.88, 2. Wang Yang (Chn) 1.84, 3. Noen-Ruthai Chaipech (Tha) 1.84;
Triple Jump: 1. Xie Limei (Chn) 14.16, 2. Li Yanmei (Chn) 14.05, 3. Mayookha Johny (Ind) 14.02;
Discus Throw: 1. Yang Fei (Chn) 59.45, 2. Lin Xiaojing (Chn) 56.16, 3. Seema Antil (Ind) 51.45;
Javelin Throw: 1. Wang Ping (Chn) 56.48, 2. Xue Juan (Chn) 54.76, 3. Seo Ae Han (Kor) 54.15;
4x100m relay: 1. China 44.25, 2. Thailand 44.69, 3. Hong Kong 46.09.