Norshidah Mohd Ali’s 24-year-old national 400m hurdles record could well be erased from the record books next year, judging from how Singapore Sports School student T. Piriyah has performed in the event at the Pacific School Games in Canberra, Australia, this week.
The 16-year-old rising talent, who is coached by former Georgian national hurdler Viatcheslav Vassiliev, may have missed out on the gold in the Girls 16 years final today.
But her bronze-medal time of 63.11sec was yet another new personal best time as it was 0.29sec faster than the 63.40sec that she had clocked in the heats on Wednesday.
That’s not all.
Singapore officials handtimed Piriyah’s run today and clocked her crossing the finish line in 62.7sec, 0.1sec faster than Norshidah’s national open and junior mark of 62.8sec, which she set in 1984 and which has remained unsurpassed since.
The Singapore Athletics Association is unlikely to ratify the hand-timing but the news will certainly be a huge boost to Piriyah’s efforts to break Norhsidah’s record next year.
For the record, the 400m hurdles was won by Lisa Celli who blitzed the field with her sensational 62.21sec, which was also a new Pacific School Games record. Jessi Elliot was second in 63.07sec.
Piryah’s bronze was one of two that Singapore won this morning. The other was by Kenneth Tan who leapt 13.75m in the Boys 15 years Triple Jump to finish third. Aaron Baxter of Queensland was first with 13.97m while Victoria’s Nathan Ryan cleared 13.86m for silver.
National women’s triple jump record holder Mariam Shazana had a poor day at the office though. She leapt 11.23m in the Girls 16 years Triple Jump to finish sixth, about 0.43m off her national mark of 11.66m. The event was won by Tara Whitehead of Queensland who leapt a stunning 12.59m.
Yours in sport
Singapore Sports Fan