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PT Usha hopeful of successful national championship

By Sports Reporter

GUWAHATI, June 25 - The queen of Indian track and field Pilavullakandi Thekkeparambil Usha, popularly named as PT Usha, expressed her confidence of a good show in the 58th National Inter State Senior Athletics Championship which will kick-start at the Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium in Sarusajai here tomorrow.

PT Usha, who arrived here yesterday, addressing a press conference today said, �The track is little bit hard as it was laid way back for the 2007 National Games, but it is satisfactory.� She hoped that the athletes will be able to put up their best show here.

�I am here in Guwahati for the first time and I am impressed with the infrastructure here. I am with my students and as it is an important event before the Jakarta Asian Games, all the athletes should be in good shape,� the Payyoli Express revealed.

Regarding Hima Das, PT Usha opined that the Assam girl is doing well but has a long way to go and should continue with her hard work.

Earlier, the organising committee chairman Lakhya Konwar, said that the stage is all set for the championship. Addressing the media, Konwar said, �As it will be the selection trial of the Indian athletes for the upcoming Jakarta Asian Games, all the top athletes of the country will be seen in action here.�

�Already above 750 athletes from 29 affiliated units have arrived here for the meet where 13 track and eight field events for both men and women will be conducted,� said Konwar.

He further revealed that the track in the Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium will be newly laid soon. The organising committee chief also informed that Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal will inaugurate the championship at 5 pm tomorrow. Assam is hosting the senior national athletics for the first time.

The secretary of the Athletics Federation of India Cuddi Kotta Valson, who was also present in the press conference, thanked the Assam Athletic Association for hosting the championship as other States turned down the offer. �The Indian team will be announced on June 30 for the Jakarta Asiad,� Valson informed.

State athletic body secretary Pradip Nunisa was also present and spoke about the preparation.

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