Sunday, December 09, 2007
Matheos Viktor Messakh, The Jakarta Post, Nakhon Ratchasima
Amid host Thailand's domination in track and field events, Indonesian heroines managed to steal two more gold medals at the Southeast Asian Games here on Saturday.
Trianingsih and Rini Budiarti finished first and second in the women's 5,000-meter run at His Majesty the King's 80th Birthday Anniversary Stadium, cheered on by the Thai crowd.
The 25-year-old Trianingsih clocked 15 minutes, 54.32 seconds, to sharpen the old record of 16:08.93 set by her senior, Supriati Sutono, in Kuala Lumpur in the 2001 Games.
Comrade Rini Budiarti followed second with 16:08.00, and Phyu War Thet of Myanmar came third with 16:27.10.
"I came here to bring home a gold medal. Two years ago, I refused to participate because I had a problem with the Indonesian Track and Field Association (PASI), but now I'm here and I hope I can contribute another gold in another class," Trianingsih said.
Earlier this year, PASI dismissed Trianingsih from its national training program following her refusal to train in Jakarta due to her studies in Salatiga, Central Java.
She was recalled to the camp in July after clocking her best time of 16:15 in the 5,000m, and 34:16 in the 10,000m at the National Championships.
Indonesian discus thrower Dwi Ratnawati also won gold by throwing 50.05 meters to upset Thai Juthaporn Krasaeyan, who came in second after throwing 49.46m, and Singaporean Guirong Zhang who threw 45.73m.
"I'm very happy because I have competed at the Games four times and this is the first time I've won a gold medal," she said before the medal presentation.
Dwi said her physical training program over the last eight months had helped her make improvements.
"I can't wait to get back into training. I hope I can do even better in the Asian Games," she said.
Track and field team manager Sumartoyo Martodihardjo said he was satisfied with the result, and was hopeful the track and field squad would contribute three more medals in the women's 10,000 meters and the men's and women's marathon.
"I'm happy with the result and can see the athletes have been training better," he said.
In the men's 4x400m relay, Indonesia's Yan Karubaba, Silas Patay, Nurrochman and Achmad Sumarsono Sakeh came in fourth after clocking 3:11.15.
Malaysia grabbed the gold medal with 3:07.95, trailed by Thailand with 3:08.25 and the Philippines with 3:08.53.
For nearly two decades, after first joining the SEA Games in 1977, track and field became a gold mine for Indonesian athletes. Since 1995, however, the country has not won more than five gold medals at the event.
Two years ago Indonesia returned with one gold, six silver and five bronze from the track -- far less than their targetted six gold, seven silver and eight bronze.