16-year old Beant Singh was the pick of the Indian athletes at the Asian Youth Athletics Championships, held at Doha, Qatar. Beant Singh, who hails from Delhi, won the gold medal in the 800 metres run, clocking a speed of 1:52.26. Singh’s efforts put him amongst the world’s fastest time-toppers for this year.
Beant Singh: Wrestler by Passion, Athlete by Choice
The teenager, after his win, shared that his first love was wrestling and that athletics, despite his success, is still a new development for him. He said,
“I was feeling really good for this race and I have been preparing really well for this competition, so to win is a great satisfaction. I have only been in athletics for a short time, two or three years. I was a wrestler before and I was picked for a national team camp by World Champion and Olympic medallist Sushil Kumar. It was at this moment that I noticed I had a talent for middle distance running and I was encouraged to switch to athletics. Sushil remains a very big inspiration for me.”
Goals Ahead in Life
The next event for Beant Singh is the IAAF World Youth Championships to be held in California, United States. Speaking about it, Beant said,
“Next stop for me is the IAAF World Youth Championships in Cali. I have set big expectations for myself – I want to beat the Indian national record there. I know I can run under 1:50 – I have done it in training and I aim to run it at the Championships.”
Flurry of Medals for India
Beant Singh’s win also saw India get its first gold medal in the event. Soon after, Kishan Tadvi added to India’s gold medal tally by winning the men’s 3000 metres, by clocking at an impressive 8:26.24. Following these two successes, R. Rajesh won the silver medal in the decathlon, clinching a total of 5,867 points, behind Kuwait’s Mohammed Alferas who score 6,671 points.
China: Always on the Leaderboard
In totality, China was the leader in the medal’s tally, winning 31 medals across the span of four days, from 8th to 11th May, in the inaugural event.