AFI to go ahead with Indian GP series sans spectators

AFI decides to go ahead with Indian Grand Prix series sans spectators due to coronavirus scare

The second competition of the Indian Grand Prix series was scheduled to be held at Sangrur but it will now be held at NIS Patiala

Representative image (iStock Photo)

The first two competitions of the Indian Grand Prix (IGP) series will be held without any spectators due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Competition Committee of Athletics Federation of India (AFI) said on Monday.

The second competition of the Indian Grand Prix series was scheduled to be held at Sangrur but it will now be held at NIS Patiala.

“IGP-1 will be held on 20th March 2020 and IGP-2 will be held on 25th March 2020 as per schedule. The venue of both the competition will be SAI NS-NIS Patiala,” AFI said in a release.

“Spectators will not be allowed inside the competition venue.”

The government had last week imposed travel restrictions to control the spread of the virus, while the sports ministry urged all national federations to avoid large gatherings in sports events.

Given the health hazard, the AFI made it clear that “personal coaches, support staff or family members/ friends of athletes who are not part of the National Coaching Camp will not be allowed inside the competition venue”.

The AFI also said that all the athletes coming from outside will be allowed to enter the NS-NIS campus only after a medical check-up by AFI/ SAI medical team at the SAI NS-NIS gate.

Accreditation card

The governing body also said that “all the athletes will be provided with an accreditation card” and they have to “leave the venue soon after completion of their event without waiting to witness other events”.

As part of its many precautionary measures, the AFI also decided to strictly restrict the movement of competitors from NS-NIS entry gate to the athletics track and back.

“Those who are not part of the National Coaching Camps are not allowed to go to the residential hostels/ guesthouses,” it said.

The AFI Competition Committee also revised the events list for both the first and second competitions.

The events in the first competition are as follows: Men’s- 200m, 400m, 800m, 5000m, 400m Hurdles, Long Jump, Triple Jump, Shot Put & Javelin Throw; Women’s- 100m, 200m, 400m, 800m, 5000m, Long Jump, Triple Jump, Shot Put, Javelin Throw.

The events in the second competition are: Men’s - 200m, 400m, 1500m, 5000m, 400m, hurdles, long jump, triple jump, shot put & javelin throw; women’s- 100m, 400m, 800m, 5000m, long jump, triple jump, shot put, javelin throw.

The AFI had earlier sought the views of its national coaches and foreign experts regarding the conduct of the Indian Grand Prix (IGP) series competitions.

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