AFI to try for visas for Anas and Poovamma again

The Athletics Federation of India will make another attempt to get visas for the country’s top 400m runners Muhammed Anas and M.R. Poovamma so that they can take part in the second leg of the Asian Grand Prix which will be held in Jiaxing in China on April 27.

Muhammed Anas is the men’s national record-holder in 400m.   -  Shiv Kumar Pushpakar

The Athletics Federation of India will make another attempt to get visas for the country’s top 400m runners Muhammed Anas and M.R. Poovamma so that they can take part in the second leg of the Asian Grand Prix which will be held in Jiaxing in China on April 27.

The two Olympians – Kerala’s Anas is the men’s national record-holder while Karnataka’s Poovamma is an Asian Games bronze medallist – failed to get the Chinese visas for the Asian GP’s opening leg which will be run in Jinhua on Monday.

“We have got fresh letters from the China Athletics Association, so we will be applying for their visas again on Monday,” said an AFI source.

The third leg of the Asian GP will be held at Chinese Taipei on April 30 and the two have got visas for that leg.

Japan has entered just five athletes for the Asian GP’s opening leg and none in the men’s 100m though it won a stunning silver in the 4x100m relay at last year’s Rio Olympics.

There had been some worries when the Indian team for the event was announced. Jinson Johnson, the Asian Championship men’s 800m silver medallist, was marked to run the 400m but the opening leg’s entry list made it clear that he would be running in the two-lapper.