Vikas Gowda is first Indian man to clinch athletics gold in 56 years

first_imgVikas Gowda gave India its first athletics gold medal of the 20th Commonwealth Games by winning the men’s discus throw competition in Glasgow on Thursday.The 31- year- old US- based Indian pocketed the gold with an effort of 63.64m, way below his personal best of 66.28m, under incessant rain at Hampden Park.The silver went to Apostolos Parellis of Cyprus who registered an effort of 63.32m, while the bronze was bagged by Jason Morgan of Jamaica with an effort of 62.34m. The gold medallist at the 2010 Delhi Commonwealth Games Benn Harradine of Australia finished fourth with a below- par effort of 61.91m.Gowda ended India’s 56- year gold medal drought in men’s athletics at the Commonwealth Games. The last and only male Indian athlete to claim a gold medal in athletics was Milkha Singh who won the men’s 440 yards at the Cardiff 1958 Games.The incessant rain on Thursday did not help the athletes’ cause in any way as the throwers had difficulty in gripping the discus and were continuously seen rubbing it with a towel.Gowda, who won a silver medal at the 2010 Delhi Games, registered his best effort in his third attempt, and though he failed to improve upon it in his subsequent three efforts, he had done enough to seal the yellow metal.The 63.64m effort was some way below his season’s best effort of 65.62m. Gowda had been considered the favourite for the gold medal after he topped the qualification round on Wednesday with an effort of 64.32m in his only throw.advertisementMeanwhile, India’s Tintu Luka failed to qualify for the finals of the women’s 800m after finishing seventh in the eight-contestant first semi-final with a timing of 2: 03.35s.last_img