Army rower Salman Khan and the returning Dattu Bhokanal of Maharashtra produced brilliant performances to reach the finals of the men's single sculls event in the 24th Open Sprint Nationals here on Saturday.
Haryana-born Salman, standing tall at 6 feet 5 inches, pushed out a 1 minute 36.8 seconds effort to cut short Satnam Singh's (1:40.8s) run over the 500-meter sprint in the first semifinal.
In the second semifinal, Dattu registered the best timing of the two semifinals clocking 1:31.7s to give Maharashtra hope on Sunday.
Dattu pushed aside the challenge of Tokyo Olympian Arvind Singh (Services) who managed 1:32.7s to set up an interesting final that will determine the fastest of the meet.
In the women's section, Kerala, Manipur and Haryana occupied places in three finals each to make it an open section.