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Indian runners will flourish at Asian Games, says Galina Buhkarina

Galina Buhkarina said that the progress made by young athletes in the camp over the last five months have been steady and they will perform well at the Asian Games.

cricket Updated: Mar 04, 2018 21:51 IST
Navneet Singh
Navneet Singh
Hindustan Times, Patiala
Galina Buhkarina,Asian Games,Gold Coast Commonwealth Games
Galina Buhkarina believes that Indian runners will perform at the Asian Games.(Getty Images)

Quarter-mile has been strength of the national team particularly when it comes to 4x400m relay. And on the eve of the 22nd Federation Cup Athletics, focus will be once again on the country’s elite 400m runners preparing for upcoming Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.

On Monday, the opening day of the competition, top runners will line up to test their strength in the preliminary round of 400m event in both men and women’s group. The overall results will reflect the potential athletes have to build up a strong relay team.

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The national women’s squad had claimed gold medal in the 2010 Delhi CWG, and four years later reached the final in Glasgow. The men’s team though hasn’t been impressive in the last two editions of the CWG.

However, with Gold Coast just four weeks away, foreign expert Galina Buhkarina overseeing the 400m training said: “The CWG doesn’t fit into the calendar as it’s being held in April. It’s too early to give quality performance. Whatever the results, it will just be a stepping stone for future.”

According to the former Russian gold medallist in women’s 4x100m relay at the 1968 Mexico Olympics, the progress made by young athletes in the camp over the last five months have been steady. “The athletes are promising and should be able to peak by August at the Asian Games (in Jakarta),” she said.

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Some of the seasoned runners like MR Poovamma have quit the national camp as she wasn’t keen to work with the Russian who is now settled in the USA. Like Poovamma some of the top male runners including Mohammad Anas are training with their personal coaches.

Regarding young athletes taking short cuts to fame and falling prey to doping, the Russian coach said, if any athletes are taking drugs it’s not her responsibility. “It’s their life and they have to make the right choice. I can only try and make them understand what is good and what is bad and remind them constantly of making the right choice in life,” she said.

First Published: Mar 04, 2018 21:51 IST