Tokyo Games: The AFI will conduct trial for 400m relay teams,© AFP
The Athletics Federation of India (AFI) on Sunday held trials of quarter milers training at the national camp at the NIS, to pick the mixed 4x400m and men’s 4x400m relay teams for the Tokyo Olympics. Along with 15 athletes in individual events, the two relay teams had also qualified for Olympics, but the AFI faced a tricky situation as the camper quarter milers had a poor show during the recent National Inter-State Championships. The AFI has a stated policy that only the national campers will be selected for the relay teams.
The women’s 400m race in the National Inter-State Championships was won by Priya Mohan (53.29 seconds) of Karnataka, who is a non-camper. Jisna Mathew, who ran in the 2019 World Championships 4x400m mixed relay from which India qualified for the Olympics, had finished seventh with a time of 54.74.
V K Vismaya, who was the second woman runner in the 2019 World Championships 4x400m mixed relay team, could not even qualify for the finals as she finished third in one of the three heats with a poor 55.33.
In the trials held on Sunday, Revathi, who was third during the National Inter-State Championships, was first in 53.55 seconds, followed by Subha Venkatesan (54.26), S Dhanalakshmi (54.27), Mathew (54.31) and Vismaya (55.34).
Dhanalakshmi had won the 100m gold in the National Inter-State Championships. She does not normally run in 400m. In the men’s trials, Sarthak Bhambri was first with 47.73, followed by Alex Anthony (47.83) and Naganatha (48.24). India can pick six athletes for the men’s 4x400m relay.
Five names will be submitted and one can be picked as an alternate runner. In 4x400m mixed relay, a country can register two men and two women and take two (a man and a woman) runners as alternates.
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