The Nation

Nongnuch and Watchara fastest

Thitima retains her triple jump; Theerayut loses

Speedy Nongnuch Sanrat and Watchara Sondee brought the curtain down on the 57th Thailand Open Track and Field Championships at the Thammasat Rangsit Main Stadium with sprint gold for the hosts.The Guangzhou Asian Games gold medallist Nongnuch, fresh from helping Royal Thai Air Force win the women's 4x100m relay gold on Saturday, won her second consecutive gold medal in the women's 100m event yesterday.The long-striding Nongnuch exploded from the blocks to storm home first in 11.81 seconds to retain her crown, dashing Chinese Jiang Shan's hopes of winning both 100m and 200m.Jiang, who ran 24.04s to clinch the 200m gold earlier, picked up silver after clocking 11.96 seconds, while Rajabhat University of Surat Thani's Pimpika Kannikom, who ran 12.09s, had to be content with the third place.Thai fans were delirious in joy when Watchara Sondee overtook South Korean Kim Kuk Young in the last 10 metres to take the gold and regain his pride. Watchara finished a disappointing third last year.Watchara claimed gold with a time of 10.61 seconds, while Kim came 0.01 second behind. Indonesian Fadlin settled for the third place after clocking 10.66s.In the women's triple jump event, Thitima Muangchan, the Guangzhou Asian Games bronze medallist and national record-holder of 14.08 metres established two years ago, retained her crown with an impressive effort of 13.52m, bettering her last year's mark of 13.48m.Kazakhstan's Anna Bondarenko took silver after jumping 13.42m, with Vietnamese Tran Hue Hoa claiming bronze with a jump of 13.05m.Thailand had a setback in the men's triple jump when title-holder Theerayut Pilakong, who set the South East Asian Games record of 16.51 metres in Vientiane, Laos, two years ago, was relegated to the second place with a below-par 16.18m.The gold medal went to Kazakhstan's Chettykbayev Yevgeniy, who covered a distance of 16.36m.Malaysian Mohd Hakimi Ismail came third with a jump of 16.00m.Chinese Wu Shui Jiao ran away with the women's 100m hurdles gold medal in 13.51 seconds, with Singaporean Lim Dipna and Royal Thai Air Force's Panida Rattanachan in second and third places after clocking 14.58s and 14.68s respectively.Uzbekistan's Rifat Artikov collected 7,175 points for the men's decathlon gold, while RTAF's Pongpat Angkaew finished a distant second with an aggregate of 5,751 points. Royal Thai Army's veteran Boonket Salon came third with a combined 5,691 points.In the women's 800m event, Chinese Zhang Xiaojun completed the two-lap run in two minutes, 10.47 seconds, leaving Sri Lankan Shanika Samanmalie and Burmese Aye Aye Than in her wake. The two runners clocked 2.10.67 and 2.10.70 respectively.However, Samanmalie regrouped later in the afternoon to win the gruelling 5,000m. The Sri Lankan covered the distance in 17 minutes, 42.45 seconds.Royal Thai Navy's Patcharee Chaithongsri, who set the Thai national record of 17.09.59 minutes eight years ago, failed to make her mark, finishing a disappointing fourth in 18.33.19 minutes.In the men's 5,000m event, Royal Thai Navy's Umyot Kit-udom stamped his class to win gold with a time of 15 minutes, 37.31 seconds. Thai national record-holder and former SEA Games gold medallist Boonthung Srisang picked up bronze after clocking 15.53.37.Reigning champions RTAF swept both gold medals on offer in the 4x400m relay events, with the men's team clocking 3.12.48 minutes and the women's side 3.51.60 minutes.After four days of the 15-country championships, HM the King's Representative Chanchai Likhitjitta presented the prestigious King's Cups to Royal Thai Army (223 points) and Royal Thai Air Force (283 points), who won the men's and women's overall crowns respectively.




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