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Singapore sprinter Shanti Pereira betters European rivals in 200m win

Singapore’s Shanti Pereira won a historic double sprint gold during the 2023 SEA Games. ST FILE PHOTO

SINGAPORE – National sprinter Shanti Pereira is used to leaving her regional rivals in the dust but on Saturday, she outclassed seven other European competitors to win the 200m final at the Athleticageneve meet at the Bout-du-Monde Sports Centre in Geneva, Switzerland.

Running in lane six, Pereira clocked 22.84 seconds to finish first ahead of the Netherlands’ Tasa Jiya (22.88) and Irish athlete Sharlene Mawdsley (23.18). Her time was just 0.15sec off her personal best and national record of 22.69.

In the 100m A final earlier, Pereira finished fourth out of eight runners in 11.38sec, which was 0.12sec off her personal best.

The meet is a World Athletics Continental Tour Bronze event, which allows Pereira to gain more ranking points as she makes a bid to qualify for the Aug 19-27 World Athletics Championships in Budapest. Athletes can either meet the world athletics championships qualifying standards or qualify through their world rankings positions. 

The current qualifying times for the 100m and 200m are 11.08 and 22.60 respectively.

Her training stint in Europe got off to a solid start in end-May, when she broke her own 100m national mark twice, in the heats and again in the final when she clocked 11.26 seconds in the 100m at the 58th International Pentecost Sport Meeting in Rehlingen, Germany. 

In May, she clinched a historic sprint double at the Cambodia SEA Games.

Pereira will next compete on Sunday at the Meeting International d’Annecy in France before another race in Germany. She will return to Singapore on June 21 to prepare for the July 12-16 Asian Athletics Championships in Bangkok and the Hangzhou Asian Games from Sept 23 to Oct 8.