Originally scheduled to be held in New Delhi, the 21st edition of Federation Cup Senior Athletics Championships will finally begin at the National Institute of Sports in Patiala on Thursday. Being one of the prestigious tournaments in India, over 700 athletes from around the country will be in Patiala for the tournament.
Some of the top names participating in different disciplines are Neeraj Chopra (Javelin Throw), Ankit Sharma (Long Jump), Tintu Luka (800m), Sudha Singh (3000m SC) and Irfan K T (20km Race Walk). The championships will serve as a qualification tournament for the Asian Athletics Championships which will be held in Bhubaneshwar from July 6-9.
“I wish all the athletes a great competition. I hope some records will be broken in Patiala. AFI is glad to receive such a large number of entries even though we had to change the venue from Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Delhi to Patiala at the last moment. We were compelled to take this decision as throwing events were not allowed inside JLN due to preparations for the FIFA U-17 World Cup to be hosted by India later this year,” Adille J Sumariwalla, AFI President, said.
“AFI is thankful to Punjab Athletics Association and Sports Authority of India for their support and making the last-minute arrangements for the competition,” he added.
“I have already qualified for the IAAF World Championships 2017 but I am participating in this prestigious competition to improve my performance. In javelin throw, the standard is continuously going up in India so it will be a good competition for all athletes. I will try to do my best in this competition,” junior world champion in javeling throw Neeraj said.
On the first day, men and women’s 5000m finals will be held. The other medal events are men and women’s 400m hurdles and in the field events, women’s shot put, high jump and hammer throw.