After CWG miss, 20km race walker KT Irfan chases Asiad norm
After ending 13th at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games and then ejected, India’s top 20km race walker KT Irfan will get a final chance for Asian Games qualification at the world race walk team competition in China this weekend.
Irfan, the national champion, was second among Indians at the CWG and was then sent home from the Games after a syringe was found in the room he shared with triple jumper Rakesh Babu.
The Athletics Federation of India let him off with a warning after no anti-doping violation was found.
Manish Singh, who clocked 1 hour, 22 minutes to finish sixth at Gold Coast, earned selection for the Jakarta Asian Games (Aug 18 to Sept 3) with that effort. The qualifying time is 1:22.00.
Irfan had clocked 1:27.34 in Australia.
Vikash Singh and Neeraj Kumar will complete the squad for the 20km team event. Individual efforts in the event will be considered for Asiad qualification.
In women’s 20km walk, national record holder Khushbir Kaur, who won silver in 2014 Incheon Asian Games, national champion Soumya B, Ravina and Shanti Kumari will chase the qualification norm of 1:34.54.
The men’s 50km team comprises national champion Sandeep Kumar and Jitendra Singh.
The meet is the last chance for Indian race walkers to achieve Asian Games qualification. Most of the others will aim to make the grade from the inter-state athletics meet to be held in Guwahati from June 26-29.