Murofushi takes 19th consecutive national athletics title


London Olympic bronze medalist Koji Murofushi won his 19th consecutive title in the men’s hammer throw at the national athletics championships on Sunday.

The 38-year-old Murofushi topped the standings with an effort of 76.42 meters at Ajinomoto Stadium. The nationals doubled as a qualifier for the world athletic championships this August in Moscow.

In the men’s 200 meters, Shota Iizuka secured his first title, crossing in 20.31 seconds, while Takayuki Kishimoto three-peated in the men’s 400 hurdles, winning in 49.08 to surpass the A qualifying standard of 49.40.

Both Iizuka and Kishimoto punched their tickets for Moscow.

Chisato Fukushima, who won the women’s 100 meters a day earlier, completed a winning double for the third year in a row with her victory in the women’s 200 in 23.25. Satomi Kubokura took her seventh consecutive title in the women’s 400 hurdles, in 56.62.