Vadodara host is for first time
India’s emerging track and field athletes in the Under-18 (Youth) category will be
in action during the 15th National Youth Athletics Championships kick-off at Vadodara on Saturday. Organising for the first time in the cultural city a total of 634 athletes including 364 boys and 270 girls from 24 states has registered themselves for the prestigious U18 athletics event organised by Athletics Federation of India (AFI) annually.
The three-day competition will feature 20 events each in boys and girls U18 categories. Technical staff from the AFI including the officials and support staff from Gujarat will be there for smooth conducting of championship. Electronic system will be used in the event for timing, scoring and measurement. Total 67 Athletes from Gujarat also take part in the 40 different different events in the championship.
Some of the known athletes who have made India proud on International level in the youth category also feature in the National Youth in Vadodara. Names like Nisar Ahmed (100m), Vikas Yadav (Javelin Throw), Sreekiran and Anu Kumar (800m), Praveen C (Triple Jump), Sanjay Kumar and Suraj Panwar (10000 Race Walk) in the boys while Aparna Roy (100m), Radha Chaudhary (800m), Seema (3000m) and Vishnu Priya (400m hurdles) are top contenders of National Youth title in the girls category.
Congratulating Gujarat Athletics Association (GAA) for hosting the meet in Vadodara, Adille J Sumariwalla, AFl President, said, ”It is after a long gap of 21 years Gujarat is hosting a national level meet. On behalf of AFI would like to thank Gujarat state athletics association for coming forward and hosting this meet. In the youth category, India is making rapid progress in athletics on the world level. Hima Das, our 18-year old athlete from Assam, who recently became the new U20 world champion in 400m and javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra, who became India’s first world champion in athletics two years ago when he won the gold medal in U20 world championships, have set examples for our young athletes. I hope, we will see many more such athletes coming up from our youth competitions and I wish Vadodara, a very successful meet,” said Sumariwalla.
Laxman V. Karamjgaokar, Secretary GAA, said, ”We are proud that Gujarat is back on the national level scene in athletics with this meet. We are ready to deliver a good meet here in Vadodara and all arrangements are made. It has been raining continuously since last few days here in Vadodara but the meet will go on as per schedule as long as rains are not too harsh. We really hope to see some new records here in this meet.”