Hima Das on Thursday scripted history by becoming the first Indian woman to win gold at the IAAF World Under-20 Athletics Championships as she cliched to top spot in the women’s 400m final race on the third day of competitions in Tampere. The 18-year-old Hima Das, a pre-tournament favourite, clocked 51.46s to win the gold.
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She now joins the illustrious company of star javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra, who won a gold in Poland in the last edition in 2016 in a world record effort. In fact, Das is the first Indian track athlete to have won a medal in the history of this competition. The previous medal winners at the World Junior Championships were Seema Punia (bronze in the discus in 2002) and Navjeet Kaur Dhillon (bronze in the discus in 2014).Just 18 months after running her first competitive race — an inter-district meet in Sivasagar, Assam — 18-year-old Hima Das has created athletics history. The daughter of a rice farmer from Dhing village in Nagaon district, she got India its first ever track gold at a global event by winning the 400 metre final at the World U20 Championships in Tampere, Finland. Tense on the starting block, Hima started slow and trailed on the home stretch, but her blazing run in the final 80m, where she overtook three rivals, saw her clocking 51.46 seconds.
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