Thursday, 21 September 2023

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Singapore’s Shanti Pereira shines at the Asian Athletics Championships, clinches sprint double gold

In an outstanding show of speed and agility, Singapore’s 26-year-old sprint star, Shanti Pereira, secured her maiden sprint double at the Asian Athletics Championships held in Bangkok on Sunday (16 Jul).

This victory underscores Pereira’s remarkable performance in 2023, reinforcing her status as one of Asia’s leading sprinters.

On Friday, Pereira rewrote her national 100m record for the sixth time this year, clocking an impressive 11.20 seconds, notwithstanding a slightly slower start—demonstrating her unprecedented prowess.

She followed this triumph with another spectacular win in the 200m event on Sunday, beating her competitors and establishing a new meet record of 22.70s.

Lining up in lane 8, Pereira led the pack, setting a blistering pace that was unmatched. Indian sprinter Jyothi Yarraji trailed behind, securing the silver with a timing of 23.13s. Li Yuting from China clinched the bronze with a time of 23.25s.

Pereira has been making history throughout this year. In May, she became the first Singaporean woman to win both the 100m and 200m events in a single edition of the Southeast Asian (SEA) Games.

She had broken the national 200m record thrice in this year alone, with her most remarkable effort of 22.69s at the SEA Games in Cambodia also being a meet record.

Although Pereira did not break her national record in the 200m event this Sunday, her timing was an improvement on the previous meet record, set by Bahrain’s Salwa Eid Naser in 2019, by 0.04s. She narrowly missed matching her SEA Games record by a mere 0.01s.

Pereira’s latest win is a remarkable turnaround from her performance at the last Asian Athletics Championships in 2019, where she failed to qualify for the 100m final.

The resilient athlete will now return to Singapore, not as a participant, but as the double champion of this prestigious regional meet.

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