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Inter-State athletics: Dutee Chand’s coach unhappy with scheduling

The Athletics Federation of India have scheduled the early rounds of 200m on the first day of the inter-state athletics meet in Guwahati on Tuesday, while it usually follows the 100m.

other sports Updated: Jun 26, 2018 02:29 IST
Navneet Singh
Navneet Singh
Hindustan Times, Guwahati
Inter-State athletics,Inter-State Senior Athletics Championships,Dutee Chand
The coach of sprinter Dutee Chand has criticised the organisers’ decision to run the women’s 200m ahead of the shorter sprint. (AFP)

Scheduling for the Inter-State Senior Athletics Championships starting here on Tuesday has come under the scanner with the coach of sprinter Dutee Chand criticising the organisers’ decision to run the women’s 200m ahead of the shorter sprint.

The preliminary rounds of the women’s 200m will be held on the opening day, which will see seven events decided in this final qualifying event for the Jakarta Asian Games to be held in August-September.

While all eyes will on rising star Hima Das and Dutee Chand, favourites for the top slot, the latter’s coach N Ramesh was unhappy with the scheduling. “Generally at international level, the 100m is scheduled on the opening two days and not the 200m,” he said.

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The women’s 400m hurdles will be one of the seven events that will be decided at the Indira Gandhi International Stadium on Tuesday.

PT Usha’s 55.42 seconds in the event, set in the final of the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics, is the third oldest national record. Sriram Singh’s 800m mark set in the 1976 Montreal Games final and the marathon mark of the late Shivnath Singh clocked in 1978 also stand.

However, it remains to be seen whether Jauna Murmu, who clocked 56.82 seconds to finish fourth at the 2010 Guangzhou Asian Games, can come close to Usha’s mark. The qualifying mark for Jakarta though is a modest 57.72 seconds.

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At Guangzhou, Ashwini Akkunji won gold in 56.16 secs. India failed to impress at the 2014 Incheon Games. Jauna Murmu’s main focus is qualifying. “The competition is good. If pushed, I can clock a faster time,” she said.

The qualifying mark in men’s 400m hurdles is 50.80 secs. A Dhrun is among the favourites. The men’s and women’s 5,000m finals are the other tracks events scheduled for the first day. Women’s discus, hammer and the high jump final are the field events on Day 1.

First Published: Jun 25, 2018 21:16 IST