Rowers win Olympic quota place in lightweight double scull


The Indian rowing team comprising Arun Lal Jat and Arvind Singh won the Tokyo Olympic quota place in men’s lightweight double scull event at the World Rowing Asia and Oceania Olympic and Paralympic Qualification Regatta in Tokyo on Friday.

The Indian team covered the 2000-metre course in six minutes 36.92 seconds to finish second behind host Japan who clocked six minutes 34.70 seconds.

“A steady pace throughout the 2000m course was key to success. The Indian team, in fact, covered the last 500m of the 2000m course faster than the eventual winners. It was a good performance,” an official of the Rowing Federation of India (RFI) told IANS.

Uzbekistan were third while Indonesia won the fourth spot. Hong Kong finished fifth and Kazakhstan sixth. The top three teams won Olympic quota places.

Since Jakar Khan had posted a good time in his Thursday’s preliminary round of the men’s single scull, he also has a good chance of winning an Olympic quota place, said the RFI official. The semi-finals and final are scheduled for Friday.

All the participating teams had to follow strict Covid-19 protocols. A member of Sri Lanka’s support staff tested positive for the virus but reports of all other coaches and athletes were negative. “The rowers were tested on Wednesday and again on Thursday for Covid-19 to ensure safety of the competitors,” said the Indian team official.

More than 75 athletes from Asian countries are participating in the Olympic qualification tournament.