Mr. Tamil Nadu Open State Championship 2010 (Salem)
Excitement, surprise, disappointment, and a lot more – the open State championship conducted at Salem on August 8 was really a potpourri of emotions.
Even before a word on the show, I first thank our dear friend and well-wisher, Gurumurthy of Lee Sports, who ensured that we were very comfortable at Salem. The man and his friends made members of Team Masters understand the meaning of ‘Home away from home.’
It took a lot out of members of Team Masters to make up our mind to go to Salem, as the previous two weeks were not kind on every one of us. However, as one of our members, Murali Vijayakumar, was participating in the event, I forced myself into accompanying him on his trip to Salem. We reached Koyambedu bus terminus at 12.30 a.m. on Friday night (August 6), straight from my office. As there weren’t direct buses to Salem till 3 a.m., we boarded a bus bound for Kallakurichi. Crammed between two closely fixed seats, Big Lee felt more uncomfortable than I. Sleep was the last thing that could come to persons going through so much of discomfort. It was around 7 a.m. when we reached Kallakurichi. The bus we boarded there was comfortable but the journey wasn’t. We were literally getting tossed every two minutes, thanks to a road full of potholes. By the time we arrived at a luxury hotel in Salem, my ‘big’ friend was almost crying out of back pain!
The weigh-in was conducted in a manner which would stop people from alleging the officials of extending ‘special favours’ to any competitor.
Secretary of Tamil Nadu Amateur Body Building Association M. Arasu and other officials ensured that none of the competitors sneaked into any class in an unethical manner.
Thanks to Gurumurthy, I got a chance to see some of our Salem competitors whom we helped, much before the show. However, the contest wasn’t cakewalk even for those warriors.
55 kg category
‘Son of the soil’ M. Chandran was the winner from the word ‘go.’ The surprise package was K. Ramamoorthy from Cuddalore. But for a pair of less-than-stunning quadriceps, he looked like a serious threat to Chandran’s undisputed top spot. The little freak-in-making, K. Mariappan of Salem, was drier and harder than what he was at Chennai two weeks ago. However, he still needs a little more size to take on Chandran.
60 kg class
Another new sensation from Salem, Sasikumar, stole the show. His muscularity was stunning and he was definitely a contender for the overall title.
65 kg category
P. Navaraj from Chennai was hard, cut and muscular.
Though not that dry, his was a well-deserved victory. M. Balamurugan from Kanchi was second. M. Suresh from Nilgiris placed third. My heartfelt wishes to this gentleman, whom I have been watching for the past couple of years. His progress has been slow yet steady.
70 kg class
A much improved A.J. Nijam from Nagai beat Salem’s favourite, Prabhakaran. I remember seeing Nijam in 2008 November at a State meet organised by my friend, Mohan Kumar, in Chennai. Wearing a trunk numbered 44, he was out of top 10 then.
Man, what an improvement! Prabhakaran’s lack of muscle maturity, perhaps, cost him the title. The young man needs more time to hone and polish that beautiful physique. All said and done, this was the toughest class, at least according to me. The gap between every competitor was, I should say, pretty close.
Mohammed Hussain Yusuf of Chennai was at his best and placed fourth in this line-up. Keep moving ahead brother, you have finally arrived and can win the damn thing in a year.
75 kg class
An awesome K. Mathanakaran from Madurai took on Murali Vijayakumar.
The experienced warrior from Madurai was harder than Big Lee and showed more muscle maturity. K. Gopinath from Chennai was slightly off and ended up in third place behind Mathanakaran and Vijayakumar.
80 Kg class
Man, the results of this category, though very fair, were a bit hard on me. R. Mohanarangam of Salem was bigger, harder, drier and in the best shape of his life. He looked every inch a champion, head to toe. After battling genetic limitations for almost a decade, Mohan had finally made it to the level of the “big boys.”
However, P.K. Nishant of Nilgiris, who won the title in 85 kg class two weeks ago, had trimmed down to enter the 80 kg class. He was too damn big for Mohan! Every muscle of his was huge. The awesome package he displayed onstage that day pushed a beautifully sculpted Mohan to second place.
In the plus 85 kg class, R. Vimal Anand of Salem and C. Ramesh of Tiruvallur locked horns once again. This time, Ramesh was drier and his muscularity stood out better than ever before. He placed first and Vimal second.
The award for most improved bodybuilder went to Nijam, who won the 70 kg class. The most muscular man award went to Nishant. The best poser award went to Murali Vijayakumar, who brought down the house when he posed to “The eye of the tiger” from Rocky III.
The overall championship went to Sasikumar.
Even as I boarded the train to Chennai, I couldn’t stop the pleasant memories of the trip and hospitality of my host from flooding my mind.
1. M. Chandran – Salem
2. K. Ramamoorthy – Cuddalore
3. K. Mariappan – Salem
4. M. Rammurthy – Thiruppur
5. V. Kumaresan – Vellore
1. M. Sasikumar – Salem
2. D. Kumar – Tiruvallur
3. A. Abdul Rahman – Nilgris
4. K.Sivakumar – Cuddalore
5. S. Naresh – Tiruvallur
1. P. Navaraj – Chennai
2. M. Balamurugan – Kanchee
3. M. Suresh – Nilgris
4. P. Vijayakumar – Chennai
5. C. Kalaivannan – Salem
1. A.J. Nijam – Nagai
2. C. Prabhakaran – Salem
3. C. Sekar – Krishnagiri
4. V.A. Md. Husssain Yusuf – Chennai
5. E. Jayaprakash – Krishnagiri
1. K. Mathanakaran – Madurai
2. Murali Vijayakumar – Chennai
3. K. Gopinath – Chennai
4. R. Gavaskar – Salem
5. K. Venkatesan – Salem
1. P.K. Nishanth – Nilgris
2. R. Mohanarangam – Salem
3. V. Sridar – Trichy
4. P. Arun – Kanniyakumari
5. A. Dinesh – Salem
1. P.S. Anish – Chennai
2. C. Nataraja – Salem
3. R. Ramachandran – Tiruppur
4. L. Victor Jesudoss – Kanchee
5. S. Sivanraj – Virudhunagar
Plus 85 kg
1. C. Ramesh – Tiruvallur
2. R. Vimal Anand – Salem
3. S.M. Krishna – Vellore
4. S. Nithiyanandham – Tiruppur
5. A. John – Chennai
– C. Lakshmi Kumar