New Delhi, May 30: In a commendable move aimed at providing international exposure to athletes, the Athletic Federation of India (AFI) has sent a 16-member team comprising long and middle distance runners led by Asian indoor champion Sinimole Paulose for a six-week training-cum-competition tour in the European circuit.
The team, which left for London yesterday, includes four women athletes and were accompanied by two coaches and a support staff. Hamza Chatholi, who won the silver medal at the Asian Indoor Games at Doha earlier this year and National record holder Basant Bahadur Rana (50km Walk) are some of the notable members in the squad. Apart from three European Grand Prix meets, the Indians will take part in another five competitions in the UK during their tour.
Indian athletes will be featuring in the European circuit for the first time.
The team: Sajeesh Joseph (800m), Rajeev Ramesan (800m), Hamza Chatholi (1500m), Paritam Bind (1500m), Ravinder (1500m), Surendra Singh (5000m and 10000m), Sandip Kumar (5000m and 10000m), Basant Bahadur Rana (50km Walk), P S Jalan (50km Walk), Harminder Singh (50km Walk), Panucha Babubhai Kesharabhai (50km Walk), Chandan Singh (50km Walk), Sinimole Paulose (800m and 1500m), Sushma Devi (800m and 1500m), Preeja Sreedharan (5000m and 10000m), Kavita Raut (5000m and 10000m), Nikolai Snesarev (Coach), Harmana Ram (Coach) and Pawan Kumar (Support staff).