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Tokyo Olympics 2020: Dutee Chand expresses concern over qualification for quadrennial event

Dutee Chand
Dutee Chand
EXPERT COLUMNIST
Modified 19 Mar 2020, 16:54 IST
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Indian sprinter Dutee Chand has raised concerns about qualifying for the Tokyo Olympics 2020, owing to growing anxiety surrounding the widespread effects of the coronavirus.

With multiple qualification events being called off or postponed in recent times, quite a few Indian athletes will now face a race against time to make the Olympic cut, one among them being Chand.

Born in Odisha, the sprinter has endured a topsy-turvy career but has managed to hurdle through multiple issues and stamp her authority as one of the country's best sprinters among the current crop of athletes.

Having won silver medals in the 100m and 200m events at the 2018 Asian Games two years after she qualified for the 2016 Rio Olympics, Chand will certainly need to raise the bar in order to make the 11.15 sec cut for the 100m event at Tokyo 2020.

The 24-year-old spoke about fear playing a big role while training, and also shed light on the precautions she has been taking to avoid contracting the virus.

"There is fear of catching the coronavirus because we train together and if somebody catches it then it is going to spread. I don't eat out at all, washing hands has become a 24-hour activity. So hopefully we will overcome the crisis."

However, the pressing issue at hand for Chand is that she might not be able to qualify for the Olympics, with many of the running events cancelled, and some postponed indefinitely.

"Of course with all the meetings cancelled it has become tough for me to qualify. I have to clock 11.15 seconds to make the cut and I am worried how I am going to make it if international events don't happen."

Currently, Chand's best timing in the 100m event is 11.22 sec, and the sprinter stressed on the standard of competition the Indian athletes will face from the foreign competitors, while remaining optimistic of making the cut on a personal level.

"We face tough competition from the best athletes from other countries. But fingers crossed, we have two months left and if there is a competition, hopefully I can make it."

Also Checkout: The Full Tokyo 2020 Olympic Schedule

Published 18 Mar 2020, 15:30 IST
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