India made a brilliant start to their U20 World Athletics Championships campaign after the 4x400m mixed relay team finished first in the heats on Wednesday in Nairobi, Kenya. India clocked 3:23.36 to get an automatic qualification for the final, which will be held in the evening.
Abdul Razak Rasheed gave India a strong start, finishing third behind Jamaica and the Czech Republic. Priya Mohan pushed further and finished a close third on the second lap. It was on the third lap when India switched into top gear and took pole position.
Summy covered the small lead by Jamaica in the first 50 m and went full throttle in the last 50m on the third lap. Kapil made sure to maintain a massive lead and finish first.
The country has certainly started to make their presence felt at the event. Earlier, the senior team had created an Asian record at the Olympics despite failing to qualify for the 4x400m mixed relay final.
The U20 India squad had a two-week training camp at Netaji Subhas National Institute of Sports, Patiala, before leaving for the competition.
Jamaica, who were one of the favorites, slipped to third position, while Czech Republic finished second.
Poland, whose senior team won gold at the Olympics, clocked 3:24.69 to finish fourth. However, it was the fastest time outside automatic qualification and therefore they will be in action in the finals.
Ethiopia, on the other hand, were disqualified after one of their sprinters stepped on the white line. It is illegal to touch the white line during a sprint.
In the second heat of the U20 World Athletics Championships 4x400m mixed relay final, Nigeria clocked 3:21.66 to finish first. It is also the fastest time of the event. Kenya also recorded better timing than India but were disqualified. Italy and South Africa were the other two teams to get automatic qualification.
Sri Lanka were second fastest outside automatic qualification and the eighth team to make it to the U20 World Athletics Championships 4x400m mixed relay final.
U20 World Athletics Championships 4x400m mixed relay final List
The U20 World Athletics Championships 4x400m mixed relay final will be held at 7:45 pm IST.