India takes first Indoor Athletics gold, Kazakstan leads with three

India claimed the first Indoor Athletics gold medal at the Ashgabat 2017 5th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games, with victory in the women’s Pentathlon.

Competing in Pentathlon for the first time in her life, Purnima Hembram amassed 4062 points to clinch the gold at the Indoor Athletics Arena on Monday.

“I only came to know I was a member of the Ashgabat 2017 team 15 days before travelling, so I prepared for the competition as best as I could. It was very unexpected, but that also makes it a lot sweeter.”

Olga Rypakova of Kazakhstan began her quest for double gold at Ashgabat 2017 with a win in women’s Long Jump, and will next compete in women’s Triple Jump on Tuesday 19 September.

Ahmed Khader Almuwallad of Saudi Arabia won the men’s 60m Hurdles title with a new Games record of 7.66sec. Sergey Grigoryev of Kazakhstan also set a new Games record while winning men’s Pole Vault. He cleared the new mark of 5.40m in his first attempt.

The third Games record of the day went to Kazakhstan’s Ivan Ivanov as he claimed men’s Shot Put gold with a 19.60m heave. Hong Kong, China won the women’s 60m Hurdles title when Lui Lai Yiu finished in a new personal best of 8.41sec.

Uzbekistan’s Nadiya Dusanova won the High Jump title with a 1.86m clearance, and Alia Mohammed of UAE stormed to the women’s 3,000m gold, finishing in a time of 9:25.03.

Kazakhstan topped the athletics medal table on day one, winning three gold and a bronze medal. India (one gold, two silver, one bronze) and Uzbekistan (one gold, one silver) are in second and third spots.

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