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Indian men’s 4×100 relay team has been disqualified from the 22nd Asian Athletics Championships after one of its members crossed the lane during exchange of baton in the final leg on Friday, Day 2 of the tournament.
It came as a big disappointment for the host country, as the team ended the race in a photo finish. But to the quartet’s horror, they were disqualified for exchange of baton in the last leg at the tournament taking place in Bhubaneswar.
John Anoorup, V K Elakkiya Dasan, J Debnath and Amiya Kum, who otherwise had a smooth run in the first two sets, were in for a shock as the baton exchange between Debnath to Mallick caused the problem. Also competing in the individual 100m dash, Mallick crossed the lane while taking the baton from Debnath, an exchange which took longer than usual.
“During practice, baton exchange has been smooth but today it so happened that it (baton exchange) was not smooth and there was a mistake,” Anoorup said after the race.
Even though the Indian team was not tipped to win the tournament, motivation from a home crowd could have pushed them for a bronze. After the race, the Korean team was declared winners, completing the race in 40.18 seconds. The other heat was won by China in a fast time of 39.06 seconds. Thailand registered their third best
time of 39.48 seconds.
Earlier in the day, Anu Raghavan, Jauna Murmu and M Arpitha qualified for the women’s 400m hurdles finals.