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Want to be India's first race walking Olympic medallist: Irfan

NEW DELHI: Race walker KT Irfan was part of the Indian contingent that went to the 2012 London Olympics. With a timing of 01 hour 20 minutes and 21 seconds (a countrywide record), Irfan finished 10th in the quadrennial match. The 30-year-old race walker from Kerala additionally certified for the 2016 Rio Olympics however because of a rigidity fracture, Irfan overlooked the Rio bus. Irfan is now living his Tokyo goals and needs to make use of all his experience and is keen to turn into the primary ever race walker from the country to win an Olympic medal.

“I recorded 01:20:21 in London. The bronze medallist China's Wang Zhen in the London Olympics recorded 1:19:25. The medal was now not that far from me. I lacked method, however this time I have experience and advanced my method. My goal is to the touch 1:19 and I am sure I can do this. I need to be the primary Olympic medallist in race walking for my country,” Irfan advised in an unique interview.

Irfan, who turned into the primary Indian sportsperson from athletics to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics, after finishing fourth in the 20 km match of the Asian Race Walking Championships in Nomi, Japan, additionally shared his experience and described the technicalities and planning needed to win an Olympic medal in race walking.

“Race walking is an excessively technical match. It appears simple however it is rather very tricky. It's your method which helps you to win a medal. Maybe we lack method in comparison with different international locations. We are focussing on our method, aside from regular workouts and a fitness regime. You can take the instance of China. They were profitable the gold medals in the remaining two editions (Olympics). You walk for 15 kilometers and then it is your method and plans that permit you to quilt the rest of the five kilometers in race walking,” Irfan explained.

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“After I went to the London Olympics, I was ranking between 4th and fifth until 15 kilometers, however lacked (method) in the remaining five kilometers. In the remaining five kilometers, you need method and tremendous fitness. I believe that's where we lack. I had a excellent studying experience in London and I have prepared myself on this period and learnt from my errors. I can cross in with a good mind in Tokyo,” Irfan, who hails from Malappuram in Kerala, advised

With the Tokyo Olympics having been postponed to 2021 because of the fast-spreading coronavirus pandemic, Irfan isn't leaving any stone unturned to stay himself fit and focussed. He will get up early in the morning and does online video chats along with his coaches and trainers.

“I am on the Bangalore SAI right now and training hard. There is a lockdown because of coronavirus in the entire country however that hasn't bogged me down. I have all the amenities right here. I am operating on my fitness. I have been requested to train by myself and to not interact with somebody in particular person. I am in regular touch with my trainer on WhatsApp. He offers me instructions over the phone and video calls, and I observe the ones religiously. My trainer Alexander Artsybashev (Russian) helps me a lot in improving my method. He is in Bangalore with me,” Irfan said.

“The campus is so large. They have closed all the gates so that nobody can enter or exit the campus. Space isn't an issue right here. Facilities are superb. I have been steered to scrub arms and then sanitize correctly after each one hour. I have been advised to not do staff training. I am in point of fact thankful to the Adani Group who're supporting me a lot. Whenever I need one thing, I just must make a phone name and that factor is available. I have to change a couple of brogues each one or two months maximum. The sneakers vary between 8k to 12 okay. It is tough to afford. They are offering me sneakers, vitamin and issues I need for my training,” the 30-year-old said.

On the Olympic postponement, Irfan, who certified for the Games in March, said: “I was all set for the Games. I am still prepared, however COVID-19 came and disturbed the Olympics agenda. But we all have yet another yr to organize ourselves. Keeping myself fit is a problem. I need to continue my apply and daily regimen. I have just one factor on my mind - profitable a medal for my country. This postponement hasn't affected my regimen”.

But one thing Irfan is lacking is his relatives, which is in Kerala. Every evening, he chats along with his members of the family by the use of video name and asks about their well-being.

“I am in regular touch with my relatives. I do video calls with them each evening after my training. They are protected. That's enough for me,” Irfan signed off.

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