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Izlyn, Shanti Topple Records, Qualify For Sea Games

2019 Asian Athletics Championships
2019 Sun Belt Outdoor Track and Field Championships

Strong, steady strides brought Veronica Shanti Pereira across the finish line in the century sprint at the 23rd Asian Athletics Championships. As she looked towards the scoreboard which revealed results of the race, elation was evident. Singapore’s sprint queen had crossed the line in third place in the second heat of the Women’s 100m event on 21 April 2019, behind eventual gold medallist Olga Safronova of Kazakhstan and bronze medallist Wei Yongli of China, automatically putting her through to the Semi-Finals the following day. But it was the four digits to the right of her name that meant the most to her.

11.58s. A new National Record for Singapore. It had been 375 days since she last ran her Personal Best time – first clocked 607 days prior to the AAC at the Kuala Lumpur 2017 Southeast Asian Games on 22 August 2017. Back then, her time of 11.73s was a new National Record and earned her the SEA Games bronze medal. Vietnamese Le Tu Chinh had taken the gold medal in 11.56s.

The Singapore Sports School alumna’s new Personal Best is Southeast Asia’s best time for 2019 as at race date and also qualifies her for the Manila 2019 Southeast Asian Games.

Shanti delivered another strong performance in the Semi-Finals with 11.71s, but was unable to qualify for the Final. She also made appearances in the Women’s 200m (Heats, 23.96s), and Women’s 4x100m Relay (45.78s) with alumna Kugapriya d/o Chandran and compatriots Clara Goh and Elizabeth-Ann Tan during the Championships in Doha, Qatar, from 21 to 24 April 2019.

Three weeks later in Arkansas, United States, fellow alumna Nur Izlyn Zaini also demolished her own National Record in the Women’s 100m Hurdles at the 2019 Sun Belt Outdoor Track and Field Championships. She breasted the tape at 13.88s in the Heats to qualify for the final with the second-best time. The Kuala Lumpur 2017 Southeast Asian Games bronze medallist lowered the record of 14.14s that she equalled at the biennial Games, jointly held with Jannah Wong. Izlyn kept up the stellar performance by clocking 13.97s in the Final the following day, missing out on the bronze medal by a mere 0.01s. Within the last month, the Georgia Southern University undergraduate has run three sub-14s races, with the first being a 13.84s at the 2019 Gamecock Invitational Outdoor on 13 April. The record was not ratified due to a tailwind of 2.2m/s during that race.