Dominant Karnataka retain overall championship

Vritti Agarwal, Tanishi Gupta, Sanidhi Mukhejee adjudged best swimmers in their respective age groups while Yug Chelani, Ishaan Mehera and Abdul Hafiz bag top honours in boys

Bhubaneswar: Karnataka retained the overall championship title with a total of 119 medals including 50 gold, 42 silver and 27 bronze medals while Maharashtra finished overall second with a total of 54 medals (11 gold, 24 silver, 19 bronze) and Tamil Nadu ended their campaign with a total of 37 medals (10 gold, 9 silver, 18 bronze) here at the 39th Sub Junior and 49th Junior National Aquatic Championship 2023 held in the swanky new Aquatic Centre at the Kalinga Sports Complex.

The final day’s proceedings saw incredible performances with four new national records being created. Palak Joshi of Maharashtra created a new national record in 200m backstroke for group I girls with a time of 2:21.38, pushing top contender Ridhima Veerendra Kumar of Karnataka to second place. While Ridhima clocked 2:22.51, Palak’s gold medal-fetching swim also eclipsed Maana Patel’s record of 2:21.41 set in the year 2015.

In another record-breaking performance, Vedanta V Madhir of Karnataka clocked 2:11.74 to erase the previous record of 2:11.97 held by Aaryan Bhosale in 200m backstroke for group II boys. Arnav Ramdas of Maharashtra finished second with a time of 2:15.27.

Closely-fought rivalry between state mates Tanishi Gupta and Dhinidhi Desinghu of Karnataka continued to unfold on the last day too with both swimmers producing a nail-biting finish in the 50m butterfly in group II girls. Tanishi clinched the gold clocking 28.52 while Dhinidhi clocked 28.71. Both of them swam under the existing national record time of 28.86 held by Tanishi created earlier in the day. Interestingly, Dhinidhi previous held the record in this event created only last year.

Dhinidhi also created a new national record in 200m freestyle for group II girls with a time of 2:05.62, smashing the previous record of 2:10.81 created in 2019 by Bavya Sachdeva. Finishing second in this event was Karnataka’s Sri Charani Tumu of Karnataka with a time of 2:12.20.

Total of 19 new national records created in this edition

Elated with the performances and new records created in this edition of the Championships, Tushar Kanti Behera, Minister of Sports, Govt of Odisha said, “I am truly honoured to be here for closing of the Aquatic National Championship, I hope athletes and swim parents have enjoyed being part of this event in the new facility and also enjoyed the hospitality of Odisha. I was filled with joy to learn that 19 new national records was created in this new Indoor Aquatic Centre. This facility was built under the leadership of visionary Hon. Chief Minister Shri Naveen Patnaik. The state-of-the-art Aquatic Centre is dedicated to the swimmers of this country and it reflects Odisha’s commitment to promote and develop swimming and build champions of tomorrow.”

“Over the past few days, we have seen incredible display of skill, determination and sportsmanship from our nation’s finest swimmers in this category. My heartfelt gratitude to Swimming Federation of India, all the coaches, officials and volunteers who worked behind the scenes to make this event a big success,” added Tushar Kanti Behera.

Yug Chelani, Vritti Agarwal among best swimmers

Yug Chelani of Rajasthan was adjudged best swimmer in group I for his effort of winning 5 gold medals in the championships, while Ishaan Mehera was adjudged best swimmer in group II boys for having won 5 golds with two new national records in his name.

Abdul Hafiz of Tamil Nadu was named best swimmer in group III for winning 3 gold, 1 silver and 1 bronze. Among the girls, Vritti Agarwal of Telanga won the best swimmer award. She ended the campaign here with 4 golds, 1 silver while Tanishi Gupta bagged the honours in group II with 4 gold, 1 silver and 3 national records to her name. Sanishi Mukherjee of Bengal walked away with the best swimmer title in group III for winning 3 gold medals.

Best Swimmer Awards:

Group I: Yug Chelani (Raj) – 5 gold
Group II: Ishaan Mehera (Kar) – 5 gold, 2 NMR
Group III: Abdul Hafiz (TN) 3 gold, 1 silver, 1 bronze

Group I: Vritti Agarwal (Tel) 4 gold, 1 silver
Group II: Tanishi Gupta (Kar) 4 gold, 1 silver, 3 NMR
Group III: Sanidhi Mukhejee (Ben) – 3 gold

Group I: 200m freestyle: 1. Yug Chelani (Raj) 1:55.02; 2. Ronak N Sawant (Mah) 1:56.14; 3. Tirthank Pegu (Assa) 1:56.20
200m backstroke: 1. Rishabh A Das (Mah) 2:06.13; 2. Nithik Nathella (TN) 2:06.99; 3. Suhas PM (Tel) 2:10.14
200m backstroke: 1. Rishabh A Das (Mah) 2:06.13; 2. Nithik Nathella (TN) 2:06.99; 3. Suhas PM (Tel) 2:10.14

Group II:
200m freestyle: 1. Akshaj T (Kar) 2:01.85; 2. Yuvraj Singh (Del) 2:02.08; 3. Monish PV (Kar) 2:02.57
200m backstroke: 1. Vedanta VM (Kar) 2:11.74 NMR; 2. Arnav RK (Mah) 2:15.27; 3. Idhant SC (Kar) 2:15.79

Group III:
50m backstroke: 1. Krishiv Doshi (MP) 33.67; 2. Arya Sathar (TN) 34.00; 3. Vihaan SP (Goa) 34.49
50m butterfly: 1. Ajeet Yadav (UP) 31.13; 2. David S (Mani) 31.57; 3. Abdul Hafeez (TN) 31.87

Group I: 200m freestyle: 1. Hashika Ramchandra (Kar) 2:08. 35; 2. Vritti Agarwal (Tel) 2:08.72; 3. Shirin (Kar) 2:12.24

Group II: 200m freestyle: 1. Dhinidhi Desinghu (Kar) 2:05.62; 2. Sri Charani (Kar) 2:12.20; 3. Aditi S Hegde (Mah) 2:12.32
200m backstroke: 1. Naisha (Kar) 2:24.71; 2. Sri Nithya Sagi (Tel) 2:25.22; 3. Pramiti G (TN) 2:30.49
50m butterfly: 1. Tanishi Gupta (Kar) 28.52; 2. Dhinidhi D (Kar) 28.71; 3. Jahnavi C (Assa) 30.00

Group III: 50m backstroke: 1. Shreya Binil (Ker) 33.20; 2. Shivani Karra (Tel) 33.46; 3. Aradhya Thota (AP) 35.49
50m butterfly: 1. Sanithi M (Ben) 31.31; 2. Shivani Karra (Tel) 32.45; 3. P Shashini (TN) 32.56