Brace of golds for Khushi Dinesh and Assam’s Shivangi Sarma

Khushi Dinesh made light of her rustiness to return gold medals in the girls’ under-17 200m and 800m freestyle events as Karnataka recorded a bright start in swimming, claiming five titles at the Khelo India Youth Games here on Friday.

Sixteen-year-old Khushi comfortably won the 200m freestyle with a timing of 2:10.29 ahead of Maharashtra’s Kiara Bangara, who clocked 2:12.16.

She claimed the 800m race with 9:26.19, while her closest competitor, Delhi’s Bhavya Sachdeva, managed 9:30.06.

Could’ve been better

“I did not get my best timing as my training was not proper due to exams. If there was someone to push me, I would have produced even better results,” said Khushi.

Khushi, who won gold medals in National championships and finished 20th in the World junior aquatics event last year, had last competed in the Asian Age Group championships in Bengaluru in September.

Shambahav V.R. (boys’ under-17, 200m freestyle, 1:56.66), Nina Venkatesh (girls’ under-17, 50m butterfly, 28.58) and Sunaina Manjunath (girls’ under-21, 50m butterfly, 30.78) were the other gold medallists from Karnataka.

Assam’s Shivangi Sarma, who trains in Delhi, picked up the under-21 200m and 800m freestyle gold medals with her personal best performances of 2:07.91 and 9:31.22 respectively.

Kareena Shankta clocked 1:14.66 in the girls’ under-17 100m breaststroke race, leading a Maharashtra sweep of the medals.

Her time bettered the previous best Indian performance of 1:14.87 by Saloni Dalal (Karnataka) in 2018.

Maharashtra led the overall tally with a total of 149 medals, including 41 gold.

Weightlifting: Sanket Sargar lifted a total of 239kg, including 107kg in snatch and 132kg in clean and jerk, to upset National junior champion Muna Nayak (102kg, 133kg, 235kg) of Odisha and take the 55kg gold medal in boys’ under-21.

Thirteen-year-old Golom Tinku (93kg, 106kg, 209kg) won the under-17 55kg title to give Arunachal its first gold.

Punjab’s Veerjeet Kaur (64kg, 79kg, 143kg) and Rajasthan’s Usha (63kg, 82kg, 145kg) bagged the girls’ under-21 and under-17 crowns in 49kg.

Shooting: In under-21 section, Neeraj Kumar of Punjab (452.3 points) and Vibhutia Bhatia of Haryana (238.3) claimed boys’ 50m rifle 3-position and girls’ 10m air pistol respectively.

Skhikha Narwal of Haryana (236.9) was under-17 10m air pistol winner.

Wrestling: Kalyani Gadekar (46kg), Sonali Mandalik (57kg), Bhagyashri Fand (61kg) of Maharashtra, Deepti (53kg), Manju (65kg) and Sunena (69kg) of Haryana helped their states dominate in girls’ under-17 events.

Haryana claimed three of the four Greco Roman gold on Friday.

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