India’s leading women sprinter and 2018 Jakarta Asian Games medalist Dutee Chand is entering the final phase of her training prior to competing at the Tokyo Olympic Games in 100 and 200 meters. According to her coach Nagpuri Ramesh, the main focus is to stay calm and maintain the fitness gained over the past couple of months.
In an exclusive chat with Sportskeeda, Dutee Chand's coach said:
“Our main target is to stay healthy so that we can improve our personal best at the Tokyo Olympic Games. To overcome the pressure of the Olympics, the plan is to take one step at a time and not aim for something big."
Dutee Chand qualified for the Tokyo Olympic Games, starting July 23, through the World Ranking System in both 100m and 200m.
Dutee Chand won silver medals at the 2018 Jakarta Asian Games in 100m and 200m. However, her main focus in Japan will be the 100m dash.
“Dutee has a personal best of 11.17 seconds in the 100m dash clocked last month in Patiala. Our main aim in Japan will be to better 11.17 seconds,” added the coach.
The women’s 100m preliminary round is scheduled for July 30 while semis are slated for a morning session on July 31. The final will be held in the evening session on July 31.
The 200m heats will start on August 2. The semis will be conducted in the evening session on August 2 and the final will be on August 3.
Dutee Chand focused on herself ahead of Tokyo Olympics
According to Dutee Chand’s coach, with less than a fortnight to go for the Tokyo Olympic Games, the best way to stay calm is to focus on winning the battle raging with her inner self.
“The field in the Tokyo Olympics will be highly competitive. Some of the athletes like Jamaica’s Shelly Ann Fraser Pryce, can run 100m under 11 seconds. So, we aren’t thinking about the performance of other competitors in fray but will fight to improve our personal best,” said Nagpuri Ramesh.
The coach said training is on the expected lines and there are no injury issues.
The Odisha sprinter had strained her right quadricep muscle during the heats at the National Inter State Athletics Championships held in Patiala from July 25 to 29.
To avoid aggravating the injury, Dutee Chand didn’t push hard in the final 100m race. She ended up finishing fourth.
“My target in the 100m final in Patiala was not to strain myself as it could have aggravated the pain and spoiled my chances at the Tokyo Olympic,” Dutee Chand said after her 100m race.
In the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, Dutee Chand made the first round exist in the women’s 100m sprint. This time she is determined to do better.
“My fitness is better than 2016. So, I’m hoping for good results in Japan,” Dutee had said after the domestic meet in Patiala.
To beat Patiala’s hot and humid weather, Dutee Chand and his coach shifted to Hyderabad recently.
“Since the emphasis was on an individual 100m/200m sprints, we got approval of the Athletics Federation of India (AFI) to train in Hyderabad,” said the coach.