The Indian men’s 4x400m relay team increased its chances of qualifying for the Tokyo Olympics with a 3: 01.89 effort in matches on the opening day of the National Interstate Athletics Championships here on Friday.
Mohamed Anas Yahya, Amoy Jacob, Arokia Rajiv and Noah Nirmal Tom took the track with the sole aim of improving the team’s time by 3: 02.61 in the Indian Grand Prix 4 here on Monday.
Their weather on Friday will lift them from the earlier 16th place on the way to Tokyo, ranking 13th. Top sixteen teams competing in all relays at the Tokyo Olympics, which opens on July 23. The deadline for qualification is June 29.
The Indian team was with 3: 02.59 in Turkey in 2019, but that time had left it in 16th place in the rankings.
The women’s 4x100m relay quartet of Archana Suseendran, Hima Das, S Dhanalakshmi and Dutee Chand, chasing the 43.05-second magic mark to qualify for the Olympics, was 0.45 seconds in the warm-up.
The team, which set a national record of 43.47 seconds in the Indian Grand Prix 4 on Monday, was given time faster than the record of the match (45.69), named after Tamil Nadu.
Both relay finals will take place on the last day on Tuesday.
Two months after recovering from a COVID-19 infection, long-distance runner Parul Chowdery defended her women’s 5,000m title.
The first day we witnessed six finals in two places – on the territory of NIS and the University of Punjab – and none of the competitors in the individual competitions was a hope for the Olympians.
Chaudhary, who contracted the virus in April at the Sports Center of the Indian Center in Bengaluru, won the race by spinning 16 minutes 4.07 seconds on the NIS tracks here.
However, the time of the athlete in Uttar Pradesh was well below the Olympic qualifying standard of 15 minutes 10 seconds. She won gold in the last edition in 2019 with a time of 17: 51.98. The event took place last year for the COVID-19 pandemic.
C Kanimozhi, who set a personal best of 13.63 in the 100m hurdles in the Federation Cup here in March, challenged Agasara Nandini to win the race.
The girl Tamil Nadu improved her own career best from 13.88 to 13.70. Sri Lanka’s WVL Sugandi had to settle for third place behind the two Indians who competed for the 100m hurdles this year.
Vikram Bharatsingh Bangriya of Madhya Pradesh won the grueling men’s 10,000m race from Kartik Kumar (Uttar Pradesh), while Parul Chowdhury (Uttar Pradesh) dominated the women’s 5000m race, winning comfortably with Komal Chandrakanti Yahdhatahta Mahara.
Returning to the race after nearly two years, Manju Bala (Rajasthan) said the hammer threw gold with an effort of 61.08m in his fifth attempt at the University of Punjab.
In the men’s 100m warm-up in the morning, Gurindervir Singh (Punjab) caught the eye with a 10.41-second sprint, while Amiya Malik (Odisha) showed flashes of returning form with 10.50 seconds in winning matches.