Story and photos by Stefanus Ian/Red Sports
Kallang Practice Track, Saturday, November 24, 2018 — Having won the Polytechnic–Institute of Technical Education (POL-ITE) Games 800m race and the road race events earlier, Kiranraj s/o Suresh (#191) said he was feeling the nerves at the starting line for the 1500m race.
“Coming into this (race) I was quite nervous, because I wanted the three (gold medals),” said the Republic Polytechnic student.
The 18-year-old eventually overcame his jitters and stuck to his coach’s plan to win his hat-trick of gold medals as he crossed the finish line, beating his chest after kissing and pointing his index finger to the sky.
At the start of the race, Kiranraj had to deal with ITE’s Shaik Abdul Hamid (#12) who went hard from the start and threw up some questions for the rest of the competitors. During the first 300m as Kiranraj ran past the call room, he glanced at his teammates and gestured with his palm with a slight look of disbelief.
“In the first 300m, the ITE guy, he went out quite hard and for a moment I was like, oh my God, is he going to run away with it, but then my coach signalled to just stay calm, so I trusted him,” said Kiranraj.
True enough, the pack began to chip away at the lead and caught up with Shaik and it was then Austin Pua’s (#153) turn to test Kiranraj’s mettle. The Ngee Ann Polytechnic runner had been training with Kiranraj before the race.
“(Austin) took off much earlier than I expected, he trained with me and I expected him to go early but not that early,” said Kiranraj.
“I was confident with my kick, so when he went, I just stayed calm and with 400m to go, I started my kick… I think I caught up with him on the back straight and for the last 200m, I think I ran my own race,” he added.
As he crossed the finish line, he was obviously delighted with the win as he celebrated and beat his chest proudly before ending his celebrations by pointing three fingers to the sky. The win was also especially sweet for Kiranraj who came in second in the 800m and third in the 1500m last year.
“I think for the 800m race, I knew I could walk away with the gold but to win the 1500m and prior to that the road race, that’s why I was very happy,” said Kiranraj.
“I waited one year for this,” he added.
Men 1500 Meter Run Open
1 #191 Kiranraj S/O Suresh, (REPUBLIC POLYTECHNIC) 4:31.11
2 #153 Austin Pua (NGEE ANN POLYTECHNIC) 4:36.42
3 #100 Wong Jun Jie, Darren (NANYANG POLYTECHNIC) 4:37.23
4 #128 Chia, Shawn (NGEE ANN POLYTECHNIC) 4:39.51
5 #234 Chiew, Le Wei (SINGAPORE POLYTECHNIC) 4:41.48
6 #74 Kwok Ho Hey, Kass (NANYANG POLYTECHNIC) 4:41.73
7 #232 Chan, Ethan (SINGAPORE POLYTECHNIC) 4:44.67
8 #270 Yoong, Joshua (SINGAPORE POLYTECHNIC) 4:46.41
9 #82 Mohamed Z, Mohamed (NANYANG POLYTECHNIC) 4:46.48
10 #12 Shaik Abd Hamid (INSTITUTE OF TECHNICAL EDUCATION) 5:02.56
11 #186 Lim, Zhi Hong (REPUBLIC POLYTECHNIC) 5:02.86
12 #199 Dylan Tang (REPUBLIC POLYTECHNIC) 5:06.75
13 #287 B Kamaludin, Muha (TEMASEK POLYTECHNIC) 6:19.66
Editor’s note: If you know the full names of the runners please leave a comment below and we will update them.
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