Indian stars to skip Asian Athletics Grand Prix

New Delhi: As the top athletes are either recovering from injury or rusty with late beginning of the season, India have decided to field a 14-member team without some star performers in the three-leg Asian Athletics Grand Prix in China with the first event on May 22.

Commonwealth Games gold medallist discus thrower Krishna Poonia will skip the three legs of the Asian Grand Prix to be held at Jiaxing (May 22), Kunshan (May 26) and Wunjiang (May 29) as she is recovering from her knee injury.

She is, however, expected to take part in the National Inter-State Athletics Meet in Bangalore from June 11-14, which will serve as the selection trial for the Asian Championships in Kobe, Japan from July 7-10.

800m runner Tintu Luka, who won a bronze in the Guangzhou Asian Games last year, will also skip the Asian Grand Prix.

The likes of Vikas Gowda (men`s discus throw) and M A Prajusha (women`s triple and long jump) will also be not there.

Those named in the 14-member team for the Asian GP include national record holders discus thrower Seema Antil, national record holders high jumper Hari Krishna Roy and triple jumper Mayookha Johny.

Samsher Pratap Singh, who won the two legs of the Indian Grand Prix at Patiala early this month, and Mahan Singh will compete in the men`s long jump while Ghamanda Ram and Sajeesh Joseph will take part in 800m.

Arpinder Singh, who won a silver in last year’s Asian junior championships in Vietnam, will compete in the men`s triple jump in the absence of national record holder Renjith Maheswari who has just joined the national camp at Patiala a few days back.

India Grand Prix winner Vikas Poonia will compete in the men`s discus throw while Shameer Mon is the only Indian taking part in the men`s 100m sprint.

The three legs of the Asian GP will also serve as the qualifying events for next year`s London Olympics and the World Championships in Daegu, South Korea from July 27 to August 4.

The Athletes: Men: Shameer Mon (100m); Kunhu Muhammed Puthanpurakka (400m): Ghamanda Ram and Sajeesh Joseph (800m); Hari Shankar Roy and Jithin Thomas (High Jump); Mahan Singh and Shamsher Partap Singh (Long Jump); Arpinder Singh (Triple Jump); Vikas Poonia (Discus Throw).

Women: Debashree Majumdar (400m); Mayookha Johny (Triple Jump); Seema Antil (Discus Throw); Suman Devi (Javelin Throw).


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