We are focusing on finer points, baton exchange and strategy ahead of Tokyo Olympics 2020, says sprinter Revathi

Indian sprinter Revathi Veeramani overcame many adversities and is now happy on a job half done – qualifying for the Tokyo Olympics 2020. The lass from Madurai, Tamil Nadu clocked 53.55 seconds for 400m to come first in the trials and book a ticket to the Tokyo Olympics.

Revathi is part of a team comprising Subha Venkatesan Dhanlakshmi Sekhar, Sarthak Bhambri and Alex Antony to participate in the 4x400m event.

The 4x400m mixed relay was introduced at the 2017 IAAF World Relays, with the IAAF recognizing a world record first in the 2019 World Athletics Championships.

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Brought up by her grandmother after her parents passed away at an early age, Revathi was spotted and nurtured by her coach Kannan in her formative days. Overcoming acute poverty, Revathi ensured that she never lost sight of her goal – to become a sprinter and representing India at an international level.

Training at the National Institute of Sports in Patiala, Revathi said it was only a job half done.

In an exclusive interview with Sportskeeda, Revathi said:

“I am very happy and proud to be a part of the team traveling to the Olympics. I never expected to make this cut. I am working a lot on bettering my timing, working out to be in good physical shape and hope to give my best at the Olympics.”

Revathi knows it won’t be a walk in the park. She said:

“There will be a tough competition. The best athletes in the world participate in the Olympics and we have been preparing well to face the best.”

Lot of focus on strategy, says Revathi

The runners in the 4×400m relay typically look back and take the baton from the incoming runner, due to the fatigue of the incoming runner, unlike in the 4x100m relay where the baton is passed on by the incoming runner. With the Tokyo Olympics 2020 round the corner, Revathi said she is working on the finer points of her sprint and also gave a sneak peek into one of the possible strategies India may use.

“We are working on the baton exchange. There are also a lot of team-building activities. We are planning to have the boys run first and last with the girls in the middle. That way the boys can get a good start and can end well while the girls can keep up the momentum in the middle,” Revathi explained.

Revathi said she is focused on doing her bit properly and believes that only teamwork can help them succeed on the biggest stage.

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“We are working on how to manage our run effectively and how to wriggle out of a group and take off by running well,” she added.

The runner from Tamil Nadu said she was happy to play a part in realizing her coach, Kannan’s dreams.

“All thanks to my coach. He is instrumental in my progress. His aim was to participate in the Olympics but he never did. He is now realizing his dream through me. He was very happy and cried a lot upon hearing about my qualification. His only advice was to give my best and come home with laurels,” Revathi concluded.

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