Trials to pick Indian Paralympic team postponed

Next week’s selection trials to select the Indian track and field team for the Tokyo Paralympics Games have been postponed due to Covid-19 pandemic, said the Paralympic Committee of India (PCI) on Sunday.

“Since we haven’t got permission from the Sports Authority of India (SAI) to conduct national selection trials at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium on June 15 and 16, we have shifted the dates to June 29 and 30,” PCI secretary general Gursharan Singh told IANS.

Singh said the deadline to send the final entries to the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) is August 1.

“We have more than 70 athletes who have achieved minimum qualifying scores (MQS) in their respective events and are eligible to compete in the national selection trials. But the IPC will allot 16 to 20 quota places for the Tokyo Paralympic Games,” he added.

The Indian team, said Singh, has potential to win medals in the field events, including men’s javelin.

“India’s Sumit Antil and Sandeep Chaudhary are two leading javelin throwers in men’s F-44 category at the world level. Antil holds the world record of 66.70 meters while Chaudhary has also won gold at the 2019 World Para Athletics Championships held in Doha. We expect both javelin throwers to deliver the goods at the right time,” he said.