AFI announced 22-member squad for the World Athletics Championships Oregon22

AFI Media

New Delhi, June 30: Olympic Games Javelin Throw gold medallist Neeraj Chopra feature in the Indian squad to compete in the World Athletics Championships Oregon22 to be held in Eugene, Oregon from July 15 to 24. Athletics Federation of India today named a 22-member, including five women, in the team.

AFI President Adille J Sumariwalla said the team had been selected from among those who had either attained the entry standard set by World Athletics or qualified on the basis of their world rankings.

Seven of the 16 athletes, who will compete in individual events, are National Record holders. They include Sable, Sreeshankar, Tajinderpal Singh Toor, Neeraj Chopra, Sandeep Kumar, Annu Rani and Priyanka Goswami.

Mr. Sumariwalla said relay runner Amoj Jacob’s selection would be subject to his regaining fitness and women’s 400m sprinter Aishwarya Kailash Mishra’s selection was subject to her undergoing a fitness trial over 400m with electronic time and dope testing. “Arokia Rajiv will replace Amoj in case he does not regain fitness,” he said.

Aishwarya Mishra clocked 51.18 seconds in the Federation Cup in Kozhikode on April 3 and has not completed a lap in a competitive event since. She entered the National Inter-State Athletics Championships in Chennai earlier this month but was disqualified after making a foul start in the 400m heats.

The AFI President said that Discus Thrower Seema Antil had chosen to withdraw from the World Championships as she wanted to prepare for the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham. “She has won medals in four Commonwealth Games and wanted to focus on the Birmingham competition,” he said.

Asked about Long Jumper Jeswin Aldrin’s exclusion, Mr. Sumariwalla said the selectors had decided not to pick him as his form was in the decline. “He attained the entry standard by jumping 8.26m in the Federation Cup on April 3 but his graph has shown only a downward trend since. He jumped 7.82, 7.69 and 7.51 in the last three meets,” he said.

When a reporter compared Jeswin Aldrin with Shot Putter Tajinderpal Singh Toor, the AFI President pointed out that the Asian champion was staging a comeback from a wrist surgery and had kept improving his performances. “In the Inter-State Championships, which was a selection meet, Toor won with a 20.34m effort. He is the best we have in Shot Put,” he said.

The team:

Men: Avinash Sable (3000m Steeplechase), MP Jabir (400m Hurdles), M Sreeshankar and Muhammed Anees Yahiya (Long Jump), Abdulla Aboobacker, Praveen Chithravel and Eldhose Paul (Triple Jump), Tajinderpal Singh Toor (Shot Put), Neeraj Chopra and Rohit Yadav (Javelin Throw), Sandeep Kumar (20km Race Walking), Amoj Jacob*, Noah Nirmal Tom, Muhammed Ajmal, Naganathan Pandi, Rajesh Ramesh and Muhammed Anas Yahiya (4x400m).

Women: S Dhanalakhsmi (200m), Aishwarya Kailash Mishra (400m), Parul Chaudhary (3000m Steeplechase), Annu Rani (Javelin Throw) and Priyanka Goswami (20km Walk).

Note: Amoj Jacob has been selected subject to fitness. If he is not fit, Arokia Rajiv will replace him in the relay squad. Aishwarya Kailash Mishra will be subject to a fitness trial in 400m (with electronic time and dope testing).