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AFI to send athletes for overseas training

Sports Reporter

HYDERABAD: Athletic Federation of India will send prospective medallists in next year's Commonwealth Games and the Doha Asian Games abroad for scientific training besides hosting two more National-level meets as selection trials to spot talent.

Speaking to media, AFI general secretary Lalit Bhanot said it was disappointing to see the low turn-up for the meet, but attributed it to the lack of confidence of the big names to come up good. "For instance, Anju Bobby George expressed a similar opinion to me. And, we don't find it necessary for her to take part in the Nationals and meet the qualifying marks," he said. However, he said the performances in the Hyderabad Nationals and the recent international events will be considered for selection of the athletes for the Commonwealth Games. "We are taking Commonwealth Games very seriously and are hopeful of returning with the best-ever medal haul," he added.

Acclimatisation

Referring to overseas training of the Indian athletes, Mr. Bhanot felt that since the Asiad is in Doha, it would be appropriate for the track and field athletes to get a feel of the weather. They will also train in South Africa for four weeks. The AFI secretary, however, admitted that the Indians had no chance of any medals in 100m, 200m, pole vault and other events, though the Federation was seriously considering more women's and men's entries in throw events and heptathlon for the Commonwealth Games.

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