Maheshwary fails to make triple jump final

August 18th, 2008 - 1:33 pm ICT by IANS  

By V. Krishnaswamy
Beijing, Aug 18 (IANS) Triple jumper Renjith Maheswary added to the miserable take of Indian athletics performance here in Beijing with a showing that was more than a metre less than his personal best (17.04 metres) and also way below his season’s best of 16.53m. The 22-year-old Maheswary touched 15.77m on his first jump and that remained his best for the day, as he fouled the next effort and managed only 15.51m on the third to end 18th from among the 20 starters in group B. But the last two had measurements fouling their attempts.

“I feel miserable, as I could not even come close to my best. After the first jump, I gave it all on the second, but fouled it very slightly and on the third I came under pressure and jumped way before the board,” said Maheshwary.

“During my last phase of training, I did not have my coach with me in Malaysia,” he added.

Maheswary was 35th overall from among 37 who had legal jumps.

The top qualifier was Idowu Phillips of Britain with a best of 17.44m and the last to get in was Viktor Kuznyetsov of Ukraine with 17.11m.

Maheswary, often touted as a great future hope after breaking India’s oldest and 36-year-old national record of 16.79m set by Mohinder Singh Gill last year, was totally listless and off colour.

At home, he had been doing above 17m, and last year at the second leg of the Asian Grand Prix he leaped to a gold with a distance of 17.04m in Guwahati. That is also his personal best, though he did clear 17.19 metres to claim the gold at the 17th Asian Athletics Championships in Amman. But in Amman his effort was wind-assisted.

Maheshwary was also fourth at the Doha Asian Games and competed at the 2007 World Championships where he failed to make the final.

Thus far all Indian athletes have performed way below their personal bests and placed low down in the final standings.

Athletes who have completed their schedules are heptathletes G.G. Pramila, J.J. Shobha and Susmita Singha Roy, discus throwers Krishna Poonia and Harwant Kaur, 10,000m runners Preeja Sreedharan in women’s and Surendra Singh among men and Renjith Maheswary. Mandeep Kaur had failed to go past the first round in the 400m women’s event, but she still has the 4 x 400m relay left.

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