GUANGZHOU, China – Chisato Fukushima won the women’s 100-meter dash on Monday, giving Japan its first gold in the event in 44 years at the Asian Games.
Fukushima timed 11.33 seconds, pipping Guzel Khubbieva of Uzbekistan by 0.01. It was also Japan’s first athletics gold on the second day of track and field competition of the Asian Games.
Miho Sato last won gold in the event at the 1966 Bangkok Games.
“I didn’t know I had won the race,” Fukushima said. “I’m very happy. The win here will be a confidence boost for the world athletics championships next year and also for the London Olympics.”
“I had wanted to win at a big tournament and have prepared for the Asian Games, thinking of it as a springboard to compete at the world level,” she added.
Fukushima will also be competing in the 200 meters and the 4×100-meter relay.
Vu Thi Huong of Vietnam took the bronze in 11.43, while compatriot Momoko Takahashi followed in fourth in 11.50.
Earlier, Japan’s Yuzo Kanemaru grabbed the silver in the men’s 400 meters and compatriot Asami Chiba also took second in the women’s race.
Kanemaru produced a strong run in a season-best of 45.32 seconds, 0.20 behind Femi Seun Ogunode of Qatar. It was the best performance by a Japanese man in the event since Susumu Takano took gold at the Seoul Asian Games in 1986.
“I was aiming for the gold medal so I’m not very happy but since I could record a season-best time I shouldn’t be too down,” Kanemaru said.
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