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Hima wins silver in Jakarta


GUWAHATI, Aug 26 - Assam sprinter Hima Das shattered the women�s 400m national record for a second time in 24 hours to win a silver in the 18th Asian Games in Jakarta today.

India�s latest track sensation, Hima clocked 50.79 seconds to win the silver, behind Bahrain�s Salwa Naser who won the gold in a new Asian Games record time of 50.09 seconds.

The silver medal from Hima, who had won a gold in 400m in the Under-20 World Athletic Championship in Finland last July, was on expected lines as the gold winner in the Jakarta event was the outright pre-race favourite.

Hima qualified for the final with a national record time of 51.00 seconds yesterday, eclipsing the 14-year-old mark set by Manjeet Kaur (51.05) in Chennai in 2004, and she bettered it again in the final.

Incidentally, it was India�s first medal in women�s 400m since Manjeet Kaur won a silver at the 2006 Doha Asian Games.

Naser, the Nigerian-born 2017 World Championships silver medallist and winner of four legs of Diamond League Series this year, did not have to exert much in the end to clinch the goal.

The bronze medal went to Kazakhstan�s Elina Milkhina, who clocked 52.63 seconds to finish ahead of Nirmala Sheoran, the other Indian in the women�s 400m final. Nirmala timed 52.96 seconds.

Content with the achievement in a senior grade global event in her maiden appearance, Hima said, �Olympic Games is the ultimate goal for every sportsperson... but my focus right now will be the forthcoming athletic championships where I must have to do well.�

Meanwhile, Assam Governor Jagdish Mukhi has congratulated sprinter Hima Das on her remarkable performance at the ongoing Asian Games where she won the silver in the women�s 400m race. �Hima has made Assam and the nation proud,� he said, wishing her the best for her future.

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