FIL-AMERICAN Trenten Beram broke the national record for the second time during the final day of the 22nd Asian Athletics Championship in Bhubaneswar, India.
The Cebu-born Beram surpassed his own Philippine record in the 200 meters set during the 2016 PATAFA Weekly Relays.
In the finals of the Asian tournament, where the 21-year-old University of Connecticut student came in fifth, he broke it again with a scintillating 20.96-second clocking, the first time ever a Filipino breached the 21-second barrier.
Ralph Waldy Soguilon used to hold it way back in the 2007 with 21.17 seconds.
Yang Chung Han of Taipei won the gold in 20.66 seconds, with Park Bonggo of Korea settling for the silver in 20.76 seconds.
Femi Seun of Qatar (20.79) and Bie Gie of China (20.85) were third and fourth, respectively.
Because of his feat, Beram will now be officially included in the national team in its future international competitions.
Beram’s feat came a day after Olympian Eric Cray snared a gold medal in the men’s 400-meter hurdles.
After skipping the 100-meter sprints to focus on his pet event, Cray bagged the gold with a run of 49.57 seconds.
He also holds the national mark and SEA mark of 48.98 seconds in the World Championships in Madrid.
Chen Chieh of Taipei came away with the silver (49.75) and Jabri of India took the bronze in 50.22 seconds.
Two years ago in the SEA Games, Cray established the course record of 49.40 seconds to win the gold.
Cray’s gold-medal win ended the Philippines’ 44-year gold-medal drought in an Asian meet.
His clocking was also .01 second faster than his performance in Osaka a few months back.
The Philippines finished 11th place overall at the biennial continental athletics conclave in a field of 45 Asian nations with 1 gold, 1 silver, and 1 bronze medals. It was the best-ever finish for team Philippines since 1991. The next Asian Championships will be held in Doha, Qatar in 2019.
Meanwhile, Anfernee Lopena was seventh in the 100-meter semis in 10.78 seconds, while Francis Medina clocked 53.34 seconds in the 400-meter hurdles heats.
EJ Obiena took the bronze in the pole vault at 5.5 meters, with Ding Bangchao of China and and Masaki Ejima taking the gold and silver, respectively, with 5.65 meters.
Mark Harry Diones earned the silver in
the triple jump in 16.45 meters, with Zhu Yaming of China taking the gold in 16.82 meters.
In women’s long jump, Marestella Torres-Sunang cleared 6.2 meters for fifth, with Vietnamese rival Bui Thi Thu taking the gold in 6.54 meters.
India’s Neena V. and Nayan James claimed the silver and bronze with leaps of 6.54 and 6.42 meters, respectively.
The buildup of the national athletics’ squad is fully supported by the Philippine Sports Commission, and in part by the Ayala Corporation, UCPB Gen, and Cherrylume Corrugated Sheets.
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