Dutee aims to improve her timing

Dutee’s coach hopes her talent and experience will yield better results.

Dutee set a National record of 11.29 in the 100m semifinals of the recent National inter-State meet in Guwahati.   -  AP

India’s sprinter Dutee Chand is targeting 11.15s before the Asian Games this September in Jakarta to be in with a chance to realise her dream of a podium finish in her maiden Asiad appearance.

Dutee set a National record of 11.29 in the 100m semifinals of the recent National inter-State meet in Guwahati (the qualifying mark for Asiad was 11.67) and won the gold clocking 11.32.

“The focus in training for the next eight weeks will be on improving the timing. I clocked 11.24 in Almaty two years ago, so I am aware that if I put in the effort under the guidance of Ramesh Sir (SAI coach N. Ramesh), I am confident of achieving my target,” Dutee said in a chat with Sportstar on Monday.

“I don’t think I have to make too many changes and the results are there for everyone to see,” said Dutee, who missed the 2014 Asiad because of her failed hyperandrogenism case.

Though Dutee has also qualified for the 200m event, she is not sure about taking part since it is for the Federation officials to decide.

“It is truly remarkable that Dutee has made it to the Asiad,” said the proud coach, who has been training her at the Gachibowli Stadium here for the last three years.

“The biggest challenge when I train Dutee is doubling up as a father figure. She needs a caring touch both on the track and off it. But fortunately, she is a gifted athlete and is a lot wiser now. With experience, the results should be better in the days to come,” the coach said.

“Realistically, given the history of Indian athletes’ performances in the Asian Games, 100m has always been tougher compared to 400m or 800m. So, our target will be to touch 11.20 before the Asiad and then hope for the best,” says the experienced coach. “Since the gold medal winners in the 2010 and 2014 Asian Games had clocked 11.33 and 11.48 respectively, we are hopeful,” he added.

“We are grateful to SAI and the Gopi Chand-Mythra Foundation for providing a physio (Navneeta) and a masseur (Mami) which helped Dutee,” Ramesh said.

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