The Athletics Federation of India (AFI) is still in doubt regarding a few Indian athletes fitness preparing for the Tokyo Olympics. For such athletes, they are scheduling more trials at the SAI South Centre in Bangalore. The AFI has decided on trials for 20km race-walkers KT Irfan and Bhawna Jat and long-jumper national record-holder M Sreeshankar.
Anju Bobby, the senior vice-president of AFI, will witness the tests through video-graphed. Sources from TNN informed TOI (Times of India), “AFI will conduct trials on Friday to assess the fitness levels of Irfan and Bhawna as they had qualified early. Irfan was the first Indian athlete to make the Tokyo grade in March 2019 when he finished fourth in the Asian Championships in Nomi, Japan. Bhawna qualified at the 2020 Nationals in Ranchi.”
The decision for the trials on the two walkers was a bit late, though, it was surprising to test Sreeshankar. The TNN source added, “The fitness test is needless and it will only disrupt the athlete’s training schedule. If the AFI was serious, they should have conducted the trails a month back.”
As 120 athletes from India have qualified and will travel to Tokyo for the Olympics. The mega event is starting from July 23 to August 8 with no spectators after it was declared a state of emergency due to COVID-19 fears.