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Day two of the East Asian Games in Osaka

Day two of the East Asian Games in Osaka
K. Ken Nakamura for the IAAF

25 May 2001 - On the second day of track & field competitions, twelve finals plus the second day of the decathlon were contested. Perhaps the biggest disappointment was men's 100m final. Because Japanese men's sprint teams are at all-time best, fans were expecting two medals for the host nation. Unfortunately, defending champion Nobuharu Asahara who now trains in Austin, Texas, could only salvage a bronze medal, while Gennadiy Chernovol of Kazakhstan won the race in a pedestrian 10.28. In the men's 400m, Jun Osakada who won the 400m in Mito on May 6 with 45.72 ran even faster; he finished second with 45.47, his second best time. Having ran 45.05 last year, he should be selected for the Edmonton team barring disaster at the national championships in two weeks.

The best race from the Japanese perspective perhaps was the women's 400m where Kazue Kakinuma set a national record at the 400m.  Kakinuma was a precocious talent, and much was expected of her since her high school days. As a high school junior, Kakinuma won the sprint double - 100m, and 200m - at the 1991 national high school championships.   The following year, 1992, was an annus mirabilis for Kakinuma.  In June of 1992, she won the national championships at the 200m, and then set a national 200m record, 23.85, nine days later.  Then in August of 1992, she won the sprint triple - 100m, 200m, and 400m - at the national high school championships.  In the process she improved her national record at the 200m to 23.82.   A month later in the 1992 World Junior Championships in Seoul, Kakinuma set a national record at the 400m - 53.45 - when she finished sixth in the final.  Unfortunately, although she showed a flash of her brilliance from time to time, because of un-timely injury, she could not repeat the performance of the wonder year of 1992. 

Her luck finally was turning upward in 1999.  She won the national championships at the 400m in 53.49, her fastest time since 1992. Then in 2000, she improved her 400mPR for the first time in eight years to 53.42. She also successfully defended the national championships. Looking to compete against the international field of right calibre, Kakinuma competed in the US in April of this year.  She was looking for the right competitions. Among the Japanese she was the best, but in the invitational meet like Super Meet, foreign competitions were too fast for her.  She ran 54.78 and 54.23 in the Brutus Hamilton at Berkeley and Mt SAC relays respectively.  Upon returning to Japan she turned in 53.91 despite of  adverse condition in Hiroshima.   The 400m at the East Asian Games in Osaka was awaited with anticipation, for Nagai stadium track is known to be fast and Kakinuma is known to perform well in the championships;  two of her three national records were set in the championships.  She did not disappoint her fans. She along with her teammates will now focus on the 4x400m relay on May 26, where if they record sub 3:34, they can book tickets to Edmonton.     

A triple jumper Takanori Sugibayashi is the only Japanese jumper who already has an Edmonton "A" standard, having recorded 17.02m last year.  However, he is struggling this season.  In Hiroshima on April 29, he could only record 15.84m.  In his next competition in Mito on May 6, he showed the sign of improvement, having  recorded windy 16.65m.  After Mito Sugibayashi said: "It was quite windy, but considering my lack of speed on the runway, I think it was good for me.  I have made progress in my run-up since Oda (Hiroshima), but I still have technical problem in my jumping phase.  If everything goes well, I think I can jump well in the East Asian Games." Unfortunately in Osaka, he took a step backward; he finished second in 16.45m. After the competition, Sugibayashi said: "Not only I am not happy with my position (second), but I am utterly disappointed with four fouls I committed in the competition.  But I am going to refocus on the national championships. I could see the light at the end of the tunnel. I think it is a time to be persistent." 

The dynamic duo of Yoko Ohta and Miki Imai has been a friendly rival in the women's high jump.  They competed together in both the 1999 World Championships and the 2000 Olympic Games.  In Sevilla, neither qualified for the final, but in Sydney, Ohta did qualify for the final (finished 11th) while Imai did not.  However, this spring season, while Imai has been challenging the national high jump record (1.95m) for three meets in a row, Ohta is struggling.   It was no different in Osaka.  While Imai won the women's high jump in 1.92m, Ohta could only managed to jump 1.80m for the fifth place.  After winning the competition, Imai challenged a national record which equals the "A" standard once again, but failed in all three attempts.  Because the "A" standard has gone up to 1.95m for the women's high jump for Edmonton, while the PR for both Ohta and Imai is 1.94m, they must both clear the "A" standard to qualify for the Edmonton team.   They have only one more chance to do so, at the national championships in two weeks time. 

100m  (0.0m/s)
1)             Gennadiy Chernovol  (KAZ)   10.28
2)         Haijian Chen (CHN)              10.31
3)             Nobuharu Asahara  (JPN)  10.44

1)         Zizhou Xu  (CHN)   45.25    New Games Record
2)         Jun Osakada (JPN)  45.47
3)         Clinton Hill   (AUS)  45.54  (guest)
4)         Mark Ormrod   (AUS)  46.07  (guest)
5)         Ryuji Muraki  (JPN)    46.17

110mH  (0.0m/s)
1)         Xiang Liu  (CHN)   13.42    New Games Record
)            Yanhao Chen  (CHN)  13.47 
3)         David Anderson (AUS)  13.97    (guest)
4)         Satoru Tanigawa  (JPN)   13.98

1)             Yasunori Uchitomi  (JPN)   8:33.98             New Games Record
2)         Wataru Izumi  (JPN)   8:36.48
3)         Wen-Chien Wu  (TPE)   8:44.15

1)         Junjie Gu  (CHN)     16.56m  (0.9m/s)
2)             Takanori Sugibayashi  (JPN)    16.45m (0.0m/s) 
3)         Jacob McReynolds  (AUS)    16.19m (-0.6m/s)     (guest)
4)         Sergey Arzamassov  (KAZ)     16.13m  (0.0m/s)

1)         Hao Liu (CHN)  18.70m
2)         Jili Wen (CHN)  18.50m
3)         Scott Martin  (AUS)   18.41m                (guest)
4)         Rys Daniel Jones (AUS)  17.71m      (guest)
5)         Jae-Il Kim  (KOR)   17.43m

1)    Rongxiang Li  (CHN)   81.55m  New Games Record
2)             Yukifumi Murakami  (JPN)   76.36m 
3)         William Hamlyn Harris  (AUS)    72.02m     (guest) 
4)         Jae-Myong Park  (KOR)     71.44m

1)         Dmitriy Karpov  (KAZ)     7567
2)         Ivan Yarkin  (KAZ)        7536
3)         Hitoshi Maruono  (JPN)     7416 

1)   Zewen Li  (CHN)    1:24:10
2)         Satoshi Yamagisawa  (JPN)  1:24:26
3)         Sergey Korepanov (KAZ)  1:24:41

100m (-1.1m/s)
1)         Xiujun Zeng  (CHN) 11.48
2)         Xuemei Li  (CHN)   11.58  
3)             Viktoriya Kovyreva  (KAZ)   11.71

1)   Fanfang Bo  (CHN)  52.31   New Games Record
2)         Svetlata Bodritskaya  (KAZ)  52.39
3)         Kazue Kakinuma  (JPN)    52.95   National Record

1)         Miki Imai  (JPN)    1.92m               New Games Record
2)             Svetlana Zalevskaya  (KAZ)  1.90m 
3)         Jieming Lu  (CHN)     1.80m

1)    Hongyu Liu   (CHN)  1:32:06
2)    Maiya Sozonova   (KAZ)  1:32:31
3)    Yan Wang  (CHN)    1:35:36