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TN girl Pavithra Venkatesh wins pole vault gold

The Times of India logo The Times of India 15-09-2021 Prasad RS
a person jumping up in the air © Provided by The Times of India

CHENNAI: Tamil Nadu's Pavithra Venkatesh won gold in the women's pole vault event at the 60th National Open athletics meet which began at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Warangal on Wednesday. The 19-year-old, who hails from Salem, cleared the bar at 3.90M to top the charts. Railways' Mariya Jaison (3.80M) won silver while Krishna Rachan (3.60M) settled for bronze.

In the women's pole vault, Tamil Nadu's Pavithra Venkatesh won the gold, clearing the bar at 3.90m while Railways' Mariya Jaison (3.80m) and Krishna Rachan (3.60m) took silver and bronze respectively. Pavithra, who had started off as a sprinter, took to pole vault in school.

"I was fascinated by the way one goes up and comes down. Pole vault is not a category in sub-junior events but it features in the junior category. My coach K Elamparithi was instrumental in me taking this sport and he has helped me reach the national level," Pavithra told TOI. Elamparithi, a Sports Development Authority of Tamil Nadu (SDAT) coach, had mentored Mariyappan Thangavelu when the star para-athlete first burst into the scene.

Pavithra had caught everyone's attention when she won gold at the south zone junior meet in Calicut earlier this year. "I clocked 3.80M during that meet which was a junior National record. That particular performance gave me a lot of confidence" said Pavithra.

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