BAHRAIN were crowned overall champions last night in the third West Asian Athletics Championships in Amman, following a fantastic final-day haul of 12 medals including eight gold, according to the Bahrain Athletics Association (BAA).
The kingdom’s national team also clinched three silver medals and one bronze medal to sign off from the competition on a brilliant note.
Yesterday’s winnings brought their overall medal tally from four days of action to a staggering 35, including 20 gold medals, 12 silver medals and three bronze medals. That was good enough for first place overall on the the final standings amongst the 12 participating nations.
Hosts Jordan were second overall with 38 medals including 10 gold, and Kuwait were third with 12 medals, eight of which were gold.
Winning their West Asian titles for Bahrain last night were Aminat Yusuf Jamal in the women’s 400 metres hurdles, Hajar Al Ameeri in the women’s 200 metres, Tigist Gashaw in the women’s 1,500m, Noora Jassim in the women’s shot put, the women’s relay team in the 4x400m, Yaqoob Salem in the men’s 200m, Abraham Rotich in the men’s 800m and Albert Rop in the men’s 5,000m.
The three silver medals were claimed by Kalkidan Gezahegne in the women’s 1,500m, Dawit Fikadu in the men’s 5,000m and the men’s relay team in the 4x400m.
The lone bronze medal on the last day was claimed by Eman Isa, after she finished two places behind Hajar in the women’s 200m.
At the end of the meeting, the Bahrain national team was presented with the overall winners’ trophy. Among those present to accept the award were West Asian Athletics Association (WAAA) general secretary and BAA vice-president Mohammed Jalal, along with BAA general secretary and head of the delegation Rashid Al Buainain.
Bahrain’s medal haul in Amman was their best so far in the West Asian Athletics Championships. The national team has shattered its previous best achieved in the inaugural event in 2010, when the Bahrainis were also the overall winners with 25 medals, including 11 gold, six silver and eight bronze medals.
Bahrain were supposed to come home with 36 medals in all from Amman, but the gold medal won by the men’s relay team on day three in the 4x100m was taken away due to a rule violation involving one of the team’s athletes.
Bahrain were one of 12 nations competing in Amman. The others were Kuwait, the UAE, Qatar, Palestine, Lebanon, Yemen, Syria, Iraq, Iran, Oman and hosts Jordan.
Bahrain fielded a total of 36 athletes in the various disciplines of the championships. They utilised the compeition to help prepare themselves for the upcoming 18th Asian Games taking place next month in Indonesia.