Seema Punia qualifies for Tokyo Olympics; Injury ravages Hima Das’ chances  

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Seema Punia has qualified for Tokyo Olympics

Patiala: Women’s discus thrower Seema Punia threw 63.72m on the final day of the ongoing Inter-State Athletics Meet to earn India another place at the Tokyo Olympics next month. Punia breached the Olympic qualification mark of 63.50m to achieve the feat.

“Seema Poonia earns #Tokyo2020 qualification with an effort of 63.72m (OQ mark 63.50m) in the women discus throw on the last day of Inter-State meet in #Patiala Congrats Seema!” Athletics Federation of India (AFI) tweeted.

The 37-year-old Punia, a silver winner at the 2018 Commonwealth Games and bronze at the 2018 Asian Games, will be taking part in her fourth Olympics. Her previous Olympics appearances came in 2004 (Athens), 2012 (London) and 2016 (Rio de Janeiro) editions.

Punia will be the second Indian woman to take part in the event at the Tokyo Olympics after national record holder Kamalpreet Kaur, who threw the iron disc to a distance of 66.59m in the Indian Grand Prix IV.

Meanwhile, Hima Das’ dream of qualifying for the Tokyo Olympics went up in smoke after the Assamese finished lowly sixth in the women’s 200m. She had earlier suffered a muscle pull during the women’s 100m heats and didn’t compete in the women’s 100m finals.

It was heartbreak for the Indian women’s 4x100m relay team too as they failed to make the Tokyo Olympics cut despite winning gold ahead of Sri Lanka. The Indian team clocked 44.15s to win the race while the target was less than 43.04s. Hima didn’t compete due to injury.

Earlier in the day, Indian golfer Aditi Ashok also made her Tokyo Olympics cut. This will be the 23-year-old’s second Olympics appearance. Ashok also participated in the 2016 edition in Rio, where she finished 41st.

The professional golfer secured her Tokyo berth after she finished as the highest-ranked Indian golfer in the women’s Olympic rankings. Aditi has a field ranking of 45 as per the latest rankings.

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