Bhubaneswar, May 23: An intense women’s Long Jump contest may be the most engaging of battles in the Indian Grand Prix 4 Athletics Competition at the Kalinga Stadium on Tuesday. Besides the season leaders Ancy Sojan and Nayana James, the event will be spiced up by World Junior Championships silver medallist Shaili Singh’s return to competition after nine months.
Rohit Yadav and Sahil Silwal will resume their duels in men’s Javelin Throw while Parul Chaudhary will seek to assert her superiority over Komal Jagdale in 3000m Steeplechase and Navjeet Kaur Dhillon will want to post another victory over the experienced campaigned Seema Antil in the women’s Discus Throw but the Long Jump pit may draw the most attention.
Ancy Sojan, who leapt past the 6.50m mark twice in successive competitions in March, will aspire to showcase consistency and form. Nayana James won the Federation Cup in Kozhikode last month with a 6.47m leap. Sherin Abdul Gafoor will also seek a return to top form while Shaili Singh’s first competition since the World Junior Championships will be keenly watched.
Even though season leader’s M Sreeshankar and Jeswin Aldrin are not entered, a look at the men’s Long Jump entry list suggests that this competition will be just as intense. Muhammed Anees Yahiya, who cracked the 8.00m barrier last year and improved to 8.15m on March 1 this year, and Yugant Shekhar Singh can dish out rich fare for the fans.
There will be some stirring races on track. Jisna Mathew and Vithya Ramaraj will both want to show improved form in the women’s 400m. There are many aspirants in the men’s quarter-mile event while MP Jabir’s form in the 400m Hurdles will evoke interest. Odisha’s Srabani Nanda, running her first 100m since July 25, will be the one to watch in the women’s sprint.