Jyothi Yarraji’s medal success in the women’s 100m hurdles at the recently finished Hangzhou Asian Games stirred a significant discussion in the sports world on Sunday. Yarraji competed in the 100m hurdles event, which sparked a big controversy at the 19th Asian Games, on a day when competitors kicked off India’s athletics campaign in the Asian Games with a bountiful haul of gold.
The women’s 100m hurdles saw some drama when China’s Wu Yanni got an early start. Both sprinters were called out by officials at the Asian Games in Hangzhou after appearing to take a hint from Yanni’s false start. Jyothi began her race in lane 5, while Wu began in lane 4.
Wu was out of the starting blocks before the pistol went off. As a result, the race was called off by officials. Jyothi filed a protest, claiming that Wu was responsible for the false start. Multiple replays on the trackside screen proved Wu’s early start and Jyothi’s reaction to her movement.
Jyothi Yarraji wins silver after a controversial start.
Following the false start controversy, Yarraji and Wu were allowed to compete in the women’s 100m hurdles after a lengthy discussion. Yarraji finished third in the 100m hurdles, finishing behind her Chinese adversary, to take home a bronze medal. Meanwhile, the Athletics Federation of India filed a protest, requesting that Wu be disqualified. After a delayed decision, Yarraji’s bronze medal was converted to silver, and Wu was disqualified from the race.
What exactly is a false start?
After Yanni was disqualified under Technical Rule 16.8, Yarraji’s bronze was upgraded to silver. According to Technical Rule 16.8, any competitor who causes a false start will be disqualified by the starter. “The rules state unequivocally that whoever leaves the ground first in the event of a false start is disqualified.” Jyothi’s hands remained on the ground, despite the Chinese athlete being one and a half steps ahead of her. We filed the protest even before the race resumed, paid the $100 protest filing fee, and won. “Jyothi’s medal has been upgraded to silver,” stated long jump legend Anju Bobby George. Jyothi finished second in the race with a time of 12.91 seconds. Yuwei Lin of China won gold with a time of 12.74 seconds, while Yumi Tanaka of Japan took bronze in the women’s 100m hurdles at the Asian Games.