After SAG, India heads for Asian Indoor C’ships

The team for the Continental Indoor Championships, including nine men and eight women athletes, is a blend of experience and promising youngsters.

The 2015 Commonwealth Youth Games record-holder in high jump Tejaswin Shankar.   -  K. Ragesh

High on confidence after a dominating show in the South Asian Games, a 17-strong Indian athletics team, comprising the likes of sprinter Dutee Chand and shot-putter Omprakash Kharana, today left for the Asian Indoor Championships in Doha starting February 19.

The team for the Continental Indoor Championships, including nine men and eight women athletes, is a blend of experience and promising youngsters.

Led by Asian champion in long jump Mayookha Johny, the reigning champion in the men’s shot put Omprakash Kharana, and the 2015 Commonwealth Youth Games record-holder in high jump Tejaswin Shankar, the Indian team will be participating in a total of 12 events at the Aspire Academy Sports complex.

India won just one gold medal from four participants in the previous edition which was held in Hangzhou, China.

This time, the Indian athletes will be competing in six events for men (800m, 3000m, high jump, long jump, triple jump and shot put) and six events for women (60m, 60mH, 1500m, high jump, long jump and shot put).

The Athletics Federation of India President Adille J. Sumariwalla, said: “The 7th Asian Indoor Championship is an important competition for our team to qualify for the Rio Olympics and also get good competition exposure for their build-up for other future competitions.

“I’m thankful to the Sports Authority of India and the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports for supporting the participation of our athletes and I’m confident that the team will utilise the opportunity to the hilt.”

Recently, the Indian team topped the medal tally in the South Asian Games with 58 medals, including 28 gold medals.

The 2015 Asian Grand Prix Series silver-medallist in long jump, Ankit Sharma, Asian championships silver-medallist in triple jump Renjith Maheswari and Johny went on to create new Games records and the trio is now all set for the Doha Championships.