Bangladesh’s sprinter Imranur Rahman made history by winning gold in the 60-metre sprint event at the Asian Indoor Athletics Championship in Kazakhstan on Saturday.
On Saturday morning, Imranur had qualified for the semifinal by emerging first in the heat with a timing of 6.70 seconds. His timing was slower than his personal best of 6.64 seconds, which he had clocked in last year’s World Athletics Indoor Championship in Belgrade.
In the semifinal he bettered his timing, clocking 6.61 seconds. But he left the best for the final, clocking a career best 6.59 seconds to win the gold medal.
After winning the medal, Bangladesh Athletics Federation general secretary Abdur Rakib was overjoyed.
“Imran has made history in the country’s athletics. He has made Bangladesh proud by winning a gold medal at this stage. Forget gold, winning any medal at the Asian stage was a dream for us,” Rakib told Prothom Alo after Imranur’s gold medal win.
Before leaving for Kazakhstan, Rakib had predicted that Imranur could win a medal for Bangladesh.
He said, “Imranur has a good chance of winning a medal at the Asian Indoor Championship. Imranur’s timing is third best of all the competitors. Bangladesh will take part in the event with the dream of winning a medal and Imranur is on his way to fulfill that goal.”
Earlier, Bangladesh’s first day at the championship had ended in disappointment with the country’s fastest woman Shirin Akter finishing last in her eight-woman heat in the 60m sprint.
Shirin, however, was happy as she improved her timing. Back, she had clocked 8.50 seconds in the 60m race while in Kazakhstan it took her 7.93 seconds.