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India finish 4th in Asian athletics

 DOHA, April 25: PU Chitra led the charge with a gold in women’s 1500m race as India picked up four medals on the fourth and final day of competitions to end at fourth in the medals tally in the Asian Athletics Championships here on Wednesday.

Chitra defended the title she had won in the 2017 edition to give India its third gold medal while Ajay Kumar Saroj (men’s 1500m) and the women’s 4x400m relay team clinched a silver each at the Khalifa Stadium.

Sprinter Dutee Chand added a bronze in women’s 200m to take India’s medal tally to 3 gold, 7 silver and 7 bronze. But there was a late drama as India was initially declared to have won a silver in men’s 4x400m relay with a time of 3:03.28, behind Japan (3:02.94) but the jury later disqualified the team for impeding an athlete after protest by China. The disqualification was done under rule 163.2.

India filed an appeal against the jury’s decision to disqualify its team from the 4x400m relay race but it was rejected.

China, who initially finished third, was given the silver while Qatar was upgraded to bronze from fourth position. The jolt reduced India’s total medal by one from 18 to 17 but did not, however, result to any changes in India’s standing in the medal tally.

India had won 29 medals (12 gold, 5 silver, 12 bronze) in the last edition in Bhubaneswar in 2017, topping the medal tally for the first time.

This time, Bahrain topped the medal tally with 11 gold, 7 silver and 4 bronze, followed by China (10 gold, 13 silver, 7 bronze), Japan (5 gold, 4 silver, 9 bronze) and India. – PTI

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