Commonwealth Games 2022 athletics: Hima Das tops her heat to qualify for the 200m semi-finals

The Indian sprinter won heat 2 with a timing of 23.42s. The top three from each heat get automatic qualification to the semis.

By Utathya Nag
Picture by 2022 Getty Images

Indian sprinter Hima Das made the cut for the women’s 200m semi-finals at the Commonwealth Games 2022 in Birmingham, UK, after finishing top in her heats on Thursday.

Hima Das, a former world junior champion and Asian Games silver medallist in the 400m who has been transitioning to the 200m in recent years, clocked 23.42s to finish in first position in heat 2 at the Alexander Stadium.

Overall, 48 athletes competed in the 200m heats, spread across six heats. The top three from each heat and the next six fastest runners qualified for Friday’s semi-finals.

Hima Das’ timing, however, was short of her personal best of 22.88s, set in Patiala last year. The Indian runner’s best time for the season is 23.29s, which she clocked at the inter-state athletics championships in Chennai in June.

Saraswati Saha owns the Indian national women’s 200m sprint record with 22.82s since 2002.

Running in lane five, Hima Das made a breezy start and finished strong to finish ahead of Zambia’s Rhoda Njobvu (23.85 s) and Uganda’s Jacent Nyamahunge (24.07s) to secure automatic qualification to the semis.

Manju Bala makes women’s hammer throw finals

Meanwhile, in the women’s hammer throw, India's Manju Bala made the cut for the final after finishing 11th in the qualifying round with a best throw of 59.68m, her only legal throw which came in her first attempt.

Compatriot Sarita Singh, however, narrowly missed out after finishing 13th among 16 competitors with a best of 57.48m in her three attempts. Both Manju and Sarita's personal bests are over 64m.

Athletes either needed to clear 68.00m or finish within the top 12 to qualify for the women’s hammer throw finals.

Canada’s Camryn Rogers, the world athletics championships 2022 silver medallist, topped the qualifiers with a Games record throw of 74.68m.

Malaysia’s Xiu Mei Grace Wong was the last woman to make the medal round, with a throw measuring 59.53m.

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