Doha: India's Jabir Madari Pillyalil qualified for the semi-finals in the men's 400m hurdles at the World Athletics Championships in Doha after finishing third in Heat 1.
On Friday, Jabir, a Keralite, clocked 49.62 seconds and finished at the 11th spot in a total of 39 athletes to enter the semifinals scheduled for Saturday.
It was only the second instance in history when an Indian male hurdler has reached the semifinals of the World Athletics Championships. At 2007 Osaka Worlds, Joseph Abraham had clocked 49.64 seconds in the heats to make it to the semis.
Meanwhile, Norway's Karsten Warholm finished the race in 49.27 seconds to come first whereas Ireland's Thomas Warr clocked 49.41 seconds to rank second.
Another Indian 400m hurdler Dharun Ayyasamy, however, failed to qualify for the semifinals as he finished sixth in Heat 5 with a clock timing of 50.55 seconds. Overall he finished 27th out of 39 athletes who participated in the race.
Earlier in the day, India began its campaign on a disappointing note as long jumper Murali Sreeshankar failed to reach the final after finishing 22nd in the qualification round. The 20-year-old could only produce a best jump of 7.62m from his three attempts while the qualification mark was set at 8.15.