Chennai dropped; Chonburi gets nod

Chennai dropped; Chonburi gets nod

With the Tamil Nadu government refusing to host Sri Lankan athletes on political grounds, the Asian Athletics Association has reworked the schedule of the Asian Grand Prix series in May, bringing in Chonburi in Thailand as a venue instead of Chennai.

The Tamil Nadu government had refused to host the Asian Championship scheduled to be held in Chennai from July 3-7 as Sri Lanka would be part of the event, and had stated that the athletes from the island nation were not welcome in the state.

In a quandary, the AAA was forced to look at other venues for the third leg of the Asian Grand Prix as well, with the event originally scheduled in Chennai on May 16. The first two legs were scheduled at Bangkok on May 8 and Colombo on May 12.

As per the new schedule, the first leg will be held in Bangkok on May 5 and the second in Chonburi on May 8. The third and final leg will be in Colombo on May 12.
On February 21, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa had stated that TN would not host the Asian meet after reports of the alleged brutal killing of slain LTTE chief V Prabhakaran’s son came out.

Ranchi in radar

However, the Athletics Federation of India is still hopeful about finding another venue in the country for the Asian meet, with Ranchi being talked about as a possibility.
Jharkhand is under President’s rule at the moment and it remains to be seen whether the meet finds the support it requires -- mainly on the financial front.

The events for this year’s series will be:  Men: 100M, 400M, 5000M/3000M, 110M hurdles, 4x100M relay; triple jump, high jump, shot put, javelin throw
Women: 100M, 400M, 800M, 100M hurdles, 4x100M relay, long jump, high jump, discus throw, javelin throw.

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