The road to the Tokyo Olympics has just got tougher.
The IAAF, the governing body for athletics, announced the qualification and entry standards for the 2020 Olympics and in a majority of the events, Indian athletes will have to break national records to make the cut.
“I didn’t expect the Olympic qualification standards to be so tough. They certainly surprised me,” Muhammed Anas, the Asian Games 400m silver medallist and National record-holder with 45.24s, told Sportstar on Monday evening.
The entry standard for Tokyo in the men’s quartermile is 44.90s.
However, the qualification window has been extended by two months for almost all the events and the entry doors will now open on May 1 this year (instead of July 1) and will close on June 29, 2020.
DUAL QUALIFICATION SYSTEM
There is another way athletes can qualify for next year’s Olympics, by virtue of their world rankings.
“After extensive consultation with key stakeholders, the IAAF Council has decided to introduce a dual qualification system, combining both the entry standards and the new world ranking system, to determine which athletes are eligible for Olympic selection in 2020,” said the IAAF after its Council meeting in Doha on Sunday.
“The process is designed to achieve about 50 percent of the target numbers for each event through entry standards and the remaining 50 percent through the IAAF world ranking system.”