KATHMANDU: Arjun Prasad Dhakal won the marathon under the fifth National Games here yesterday. The APF athlete complted the 42.195km distance in two hours 30 minutes 06 seconds, beating the opponents by more than five minutes.
In the absence of Nepal Army stars in Arjun Basnet and Rajendra Bhandari, Dhakal easily outraced the opponents to win the gold medal but he was about four minutes behind his own record. “There was no competition at all and It was an easy victory as there was no one to push from behind,” said Dhakal, who also won the 10,000m gold in the Games.
Narayan Desar of Nepal Police came second in 2:36:15, while APF’s Amar Bahadur Shahi finished
third in 2:37:11.
The race started from Tripureshwor and went through Singhadurbar, Kamaladi, Narayanhiti Museum and Panipokhari before returning to the stadium. The players were made to run the same route four times before entering the Dasharath Stadium. This is for the first time in the Nepali athletics history the organisers set the route in such manner and most probably it is the first marathon run in laps in the world history.
“This the the new experiment and I think it is not god for the players. The athletes get monotonous running the same route again and again,” said Dhakal’s coach Sushil Narsing Rana.

Boxing
APF dominated the boxing ring winning nine golds out of 16 in contention. Mala Rai (46kg), Maya
Chaudhary (48kg), Sumitra Napit (51kg), Sanju Lama (54kg), Mugha Maya Pakhrin (57) and Deepa Chhetry (60) clean swept the women’s bosing winning all six events in contention. Sachin Raut (48), Ajit Gurung (60) and Sushil Ghimire (64) gave APF the other golds in men’s section. Sudesh Manandhar (51kg), Rajan Shipakar (75), Deepak Maharjan (81) and Max Basnet (91) bagged golds for Central Region. Devendra Raj Singh Thakuri (54) and Anil Gurung (69) won gold medals for Nepal Army. Policeman Dinesh Shrestha and Deepa Chhetri of APF were declared the best boxers and won adidas gift vouchers.

Table Tennis
Gita Thapa of Eastern Region and Shiva Sundar Gothe of Central Region clinched the women’s and men’s singles gold medal in table tennis yesterday. Gita defeated Rita Praqjapati while Shiva overcame Ajay Suwal in finals.

Kabaddi
Nepali Army struck gold medal with a 15-12 victory over Central Region in men’s kabaddi. Nepal Police won women’s gold with a 26-6 win over Nepali Army.

Handball
Western Region clinched gold medal in handball defeating Nepal Police 24-16. Bibek KC of Central
Region was declared the best player.

Hockey
Far-Western Region edged Western Region 1-0 to win gold in hockey. Bhan Bahadur Panta scored the winner for Far-Western Region.

Basketball
Central Region and APF will fight for the gold medal after winning their semi-final matches. Manoj Sherchan netted 28 points as Central Region overwhelmed Nepali Army 140-62 while Binod Shrestha scored 22 as APF eased to a comfortable 118-77 win over Western Region.

Football
Eastern Region stunned Nepal Police 2-1 in the semi-final of the men’s football. Surendra Tamang and Buddha Chemjong scored for Eastern Region while Jumanu Rai replied for Nepal Police. In Sunday’s final, Eastern Region will play APF, who defeated Western Region 1-0 on a solitary gaol from Niraj Shrestha.

Snooker
Saroj Kumar Mulmi of Central Region won gold in snooker. In a fiercely contested final, Mulmi overcame Shyam Khadki 12-109, 91-20, 52-62, 29-75, 42-62, 60-22, 92-19, 74-20, 77-25.

Kho Kho
Central Region clinched the Kho Kho gold medal with the 19-12 win over Eastern Region yesterday. Western Region defeated Mid-Western Region 31-16 to claime bronze.