Indian’s top quarter-miler and Asian games silver medalist and World Junior 400m champion Hima Das has shifted to 200m from her favorite 400m. This decision came after her training was affected due to recurring fever in December and January as reported here.
She has a tough last year as she missed World Championship due to back injury. Her last year’s performance in 400m were way below her personal best. Now she moves to 200m this season, which drastically reduces her chances of qualifying for an individual event for Olympics.
She will switch back to 400m next year. But in order to qualify for Olympic in 200m, she has a mountain to climb as qualifying mark for Olympics is 22.80 seconds and her personal best is 23.10 seconds.
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Last season, Hima won five gold medals, four in the 200 metres, in less than a month in low-key meets while competing against little-known athletes. She had pulled out of the 400 metres at the Asian Athletics Championships in Doha because of a bad back and making her run the shorter event was portrayed as a way to ease her back into competition.
Yet plans went awry when the AFI had to pull her out of the World Championships after having named her in the 4×400 metre relay and mixed relay squads.
“Last year she was feeling the back injury and we did our analysis after the season with recovery experts, doctors and physiotherapists and the back issues seemed to have been solved now, but then she had fever. could not train properly and that was a setback. So now we are trying to make the best out of the situation and say ‘I think it is better she focus on the shorter event’ where you don’t need such a high volume but the training is focusing on intensity. This will definitely help her in the future,” Herrmann said to The Indian Express
There is an outside chance of Hima being part of the 4×400 meter relay squads, but it is too early to predict as the AFI will finalise the team only by mid-May. “May be in the relay she could run but we have to see. It depends of course on the quality of the other runners. Right now it is too early to say.”
The Indian relay squads are set to run against the German national team at the end of May in a quest to give them exposure of competing against one of the top teams in the world and also improving timing to ensure the squads remain in the top-16, the cut off rank for the Olympics.