Sriram Singh

Honorary Captain Sriram Singh Shekhawat (born 14 November 1948) is a former Indian middle-distance runner.

Honorary Captain
Sriram Singh
Padma Shri
Personal information
Full nameSriram Singh Shekhawat
NationalityIndian
Born (1948-11-14) 14 November 1948 (age 72)
Badnagar, Jaipur, Rajasthan, India
Military career
Allegiance India
Service/branch Indian Army
RankCaptain of the Indian Army.svg Honorary Captain
UnitRajputana Rifles
AwardsPadma Shri
Sport
CountryIndia
SportTrack and field
Event(s)800 metres
ClubRajputana Rifles
Achievements and titles
Personal best(s)1:45.77 NR (Montreal 1976)
Medal record
Men's athletics
Representing  India
Asian Games
Gold medal – first place 1974 Tehran 800 m
Gold medal – first place 1978 Bangkok 800 m
Silver medal – second place 1970 Bangkok 800 m
Silver medal – second place 1978 Bangkok 4×400 m Relay
Silver medal – second place 1974 Tehran 4×400 m Relay
Asian Athletics Championships
Silver medal – second place 1973 Manila 800m
Gold medal – first place 1975 Manila 400m
Gold medal – first place 1975 Manila 800m
Gold medal – first place 1975 Manila 4×400m Relay

Sriram Singh joined Rajputana Rifles in 1968 where he came under the influence of the coach Ilyas Babar. Babar persuaded him to shift his focus from 400 meters to 800 meters.

In the 1970 Asian Games in Bangkok, he was beaten to the second place in the 800 meters by Jimmy Crampton of Burma. Singh was eliminated in the heats of the Munich Olympics in 1972 but his time of 1:47.7 bettered Crampton's Asian record. Prior to the competition he had never run on synthetic tracks. He improved his time to 1:47.6 to win the gold in the 1974 Asian Games.

The high point of Sriram Singh's career was the 800m race in 1976 Montreal Olympics. The qualifying round, the semifinal and the final were run on successive days. In the first race, he broke his own Asian record with a time of 1:45.86[1] In the semifinal, he came fourth in a time of 1:46.42[2]

In the final, Singh made a huge rush from the break at 300 meters to take lead at the bell with a time of 50.85 ahead of Cuban Alberto Juantorena's 50.90. Juantorena caught up with him around the 550m mark and won in a world record time of 1:43.50. Singh faded away in the home straight to finish seventh with a time of 1:45.77. Juantorena later attributed his world record to Sriram's front running.

Sriram Singh's time stood as the Asian record until it was broken by Lee Jin-il in 1994 and as a national record for 42 years until it was broken by Jinson Johnson in June 2018.[3]

In the year 1973, he was awarded the prestigious Arjuna Award, as recognition to his extraordinary achievements in Athletics.

In the year 1974, he was awarded the prestigious civil award of Padma Shri as recognition to his contribution to the field of sport.

He retained his 800 m gold medal in the 1978 Asian Games (1:48.80), but was eliminated in the heats of the same event in the Moscow Olympics. He also won 800m Silver medal in 1973 Asian Athletics Championships and 3 Gold medals for 400 m, 800 m and 4×400 m relay in 1975 Asian Athletics Championships.

Post retirement he has taken up the job of mentoring talented youth in the sport and garners a lot of respect to this day

International competitionsEdit

Year Competition Venue Position Notes
1970 Asian Games Bangkok, Thailand 2nd 800 m
1974 Asian Games Tehran, Iran 1st 800 m
1978 Asian Games Bangkok, Thailand 1st 800 m

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Mens Metres Round One at Sports Reference
  2. ^ Mens Metres Semi Finals at Sports Reference
  3. ^ "Jinson Johnson breaks Sriram Singh 42-year-old 800m national record". Hindustan Times. 2018-06-27. Retrieved 2018-08-31.
  • K. Arumugam and Gulu Ezekiel, Great Indian Olympians

External linksEdit