Swapna Barman

Doha: Despite her knee injury, Asian Games gold medallist heptathlete Swapna Barman clinched a silver medal at the Asian Athletics Championships being held in Doha, Qatar. Barman, who is a native of Jalpaiguri in West Bengal, aggregated a total of 5,993 points to finish second behind Ekaterina Vornina (6,198 points) of Uzbekistan.

The 4 x 400 m mixed relay team also clinched a silver each while Sanjivani Jadhav won a bronze in the 10,000 m race on the third day of the championship on Tuesday.

The Indian quartet of Mohammed Anas, M R Poovamma, V K Vismaya, and Arokia Rajiv clocked 3:16.47 to finish second, behind Bahrain, in the 4x4000m mixed relay team, which was introduced for the first time in the championship.

Barman, who has six toes on either foot, is used to pain as she has been running with ill-fitting shoes for a good part of her life. The demands on the body the seven-discipline event puts can make an athlete prone to injury. The doctors had advised her to undergo a knee surgery but she decided against it because she wasn’t convinced about being able to return pain-free after going under the knife.

A shoe company of international repute had provided her customised pairs after she won the Asian Games gold last year, but she has not been able to remain injury free. During the Asiad, she was suffering from a dental infection but took part in the game.

“Not very happy, I am not pleased with my result in javelin throw this morning. Preparation was not good, I am injury queen you know, had a problem in ankle. I really wanted to do better,” Barman was quoted as saying after the event.

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