Olympic-bound javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra will be one of the top attractions at the 24th Federation Cup Senior Athletics Championships starting on Monday.
A total of 617 athletes will compete in the five-day championship tournament, to be held at the National Institute of Sports (NIS) in Patiala. With the pandemic-postponed Tokyo Olympics drawing closer, the athletes will aspire to put their best foot forward for improving their rankings.
The Federation Cup will enable steeplechaser Avinash Sable, and Neeraj Chopra to fine-tune their rough edges ahead of the Tokyo Olympics.
Federation Cup - A platform to improve rankings ahead of Tokyo Olympics
The recently-concluded Indian Grand Prix athletic meets set the tone for the upcoming Federation Cup tournament.
Neeraj broke his own national record with a throw of 88.07m in the IGP-III. His compatriot, Murali Sreeshankar, raised the bar in long jump by leaping 8.05m at IGP-II, while Dutee Chand concluded her IGP campaign with two 100m victories.
Out of the 38 events to be held in the competition, an athlete can participate in a maximum of two events.
Long-distance runner Sanjivani Jadhav will make a comeback to the domestic track competition after serving a two-year doping ban. She will compete against 2019 South Asian Games silver medalist Kavita Yadav, Arati Patil and a young crop of competitors.
National record holder Dutee Chand will be the biggest attraction in the women's hurdles. She will strive to breach the qualifying mark of 11.15s for the 2021 Tokyo Olympics.
Also Read: The Call of Dutee
Several other athletes, including Hima Das, M. Sreeshankar, Manjit Singh, Muhammed Anas, Amoj Jacob, Arokia Rajiv and Dharun Ayyasamy, will also be seen in action at the Federation Cup.