Tintu may run relay

Tintu Luka is to be brought into the Indian 4x400M relay team that will compete on the final day of the 20th Asian Athletics Championships here on Sunday.

The Athletics Federation of India had attempted to bring in Ashwini Akkunji into the team soon after her doping ban ended but that didn’t succeed, with the technical delegate here rejecting the AFI request.

M R Poovamma, Anu Mariam Jose and Nirmala are the other runners. Anilda Thomas was expected to be the fourth member of the quartet but considering her inexperience, it was decided to replace her with Tintu, according to AFI sources. The team trained on Saturday with Tintu being in the mix.

The P T Usha-ward was part of the Indian team that finished fourth in the last Asian Championships in Kobe in 2011. But after Kazakhstan and Iraq, who finished second and third, were disqualified due to positive dope tests, India were elevated to silver position.

India had fielded a scratch outfit then after the cream of their longer relay team was wiped out due to positive dope tests.

It will be a tough day for Tintu as she alsohas the 800M final lined up in the evening. But there is an hour’s gap between the two-lap race and the relay, allowing time for sufficient recovery. The Indians need to clock 3:33.00 or better to earn qualification for the World Championships.

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