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Athletics

Amoj Jacob credits preparation camp in Bahamas for Paris Olympic berth

Indian men's and women's 4x400m relay teams booked their Paris Olympic berth at World Relays Bahamas, earlier this month.

Amoj Jacob credits preparation camp in Bahamas for Paris Olympic berth
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Amoj Jacob was excellent in his leg ensuring India clinched the second spot in the 4x400m relay needed to qualify for the Paris Olympics. (Photo Credit: AFI)

By

The Bridge Desk

Updated: 29 May 2024 12:12 PM GMT

The Indian men’s 4x400m relay team comprising Muhammed Anas Yahiya, Muhammed Ajmal, Arokia Rajiv, and Amoj Jacob clocked 3:03.23 to secure its berth in the Paris 2024 Olympic Games competition. The quartet finished behind the United States of America in Olympic Qualifying Round 2 of the World Relays Championship in Nassau, The Bahamas.

Amoj Jacob was the star of the team as he ran the anchor leg with finesse and finished second behind the USA to clinch the Paris Olympics berth.

In a chat with SAI Media, Amoj credited the one-month stay and preparatory camp in the Bahamas felicitated by the Sports Authority of India (SAI) as one of the reasons for the team to get the Paris berth.

"The acclimatization in the Bahamas was very useful. The time zone difference would have made things difficult for us. We were unable to sleep or recover well. It was good that we went a month earlier. And we were all ready for the competition two weeks prior. Then we worked out and got there and qualified," Jacob told SAI media.

"My body took almost a week to adapt to the weather conditions and time difference there. I was sleeping in the afternoon and not being able to sleep at night due to the time zone change. The entire team encountered the same problem and it was good that we reached the Bahamas a month earlier. However, looking at the same beach every day did get boring," he added further.

The Indian men's relay team was expected to book the berth by qualifying for the finals of the World Relays but an injury to Rajesh Ramesh in the second leg of the relay meant that they had to do the job in the last qualification race.

Talking about what happened on the track, Jacob said, "Our main target was to qualify for Paris 2024. It was unfortunate that Rajesh Ramesh suffered a hamstring injury in the Olympic Qualifying Round 1. Otherwise, the team could have comfortably clocked below 3-minute time. Despite the setback, we were able to book our berth for the Olympics. That is highly motivating."

However, the team was not affected by the injury to Rajesh as Rajiv Arokia slotted in his place and did well in the final race to seal the Paris berth.

"It was easy because we were practicing together. And we had trained the baton exchange with different combinations. The only concern was to ensure that no one else got injured. It is easier than 100 meters relay where better coordination is required," said Jacob.

"So, it was an easy transition for us. And because Rajiv was with us for a long time, he was in the camp, he was our senior. So, he knew what to expect and what not. And it was easy only," he concluded.

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