Blog by: Kartikeya Chaturvedi
Dutee Chand broke the women’s 100m National record twice in a day as she stunningly brought it down to 11.24s and qualified for the Rio Olympics at the Kosanov memorial athletics meet on Saturday. Dutee had run 11.30 secs in heats in the morning, which was better than the Olympics entry standard of 11.32, and in the evening, without any pressure, she was a lot faster in the final where she finished second.
Kazakhstan’s Viktoriya Zyabkina, a semifinalist at the Beijing World’s last year, won in a personal best 11.15s. Dutee now holds the four fastest times by an Indian woman, all clocked this year, in the event. In other events, the Indian men’s 4x100m relay team took the top place in 39.86s while the women’s relay team was second in 44.10s. And in women’s triple jump, N.V. Sheena produced her personal best while finishing fifth with 13.59m. Dutee, after her qualification, vowed to perform even better and not let anyone down in the Olympics.
In 2014, Dutee was pulled out from the Commonwealth Games squad and was suspended due to having a higher level of testosterone than was permissible in a woman athlete, according to the IAAF hyperandrogenism laws. She was brave enough to fight this ban and in 2015, in a historical verdict, the Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) ruled in her favour thereby allowing her to compete again.
Despite this turmoil and the fact that she lost an entire year of training, that she has gone on to qualify for the Olympics speaks volumes of her fighting spirit and character. BFY salutes to her spirit and passion.
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