India was today deprived of at least three medals at the Asian Cross Country Championships in Bahrain due to an apparent goof-up by the Athletics Federation of India which did not field the required number of participants to be considered for team standings.
India fielded three athletes each in senior men, senior women, junior men and junior women categories in the championships and except in case of the first, the country should have won a team bronze each in the remaining three as they secured the third highest aggregate points.
But strangely, India did not get any medal in the championships held in Manama.
Sources told PTI this was due to the reason that each country was to field four runners in each event though only the top three would be considered for counting of aggregate points for team results. India fielded only three runners in each event.
Points are counted according to the position of each runner like one point for the winner, two for the second-place finisher and three for the third. The team which gets the lowest aggregate point will get the gold and so on.
When contacted, AFI President Adille Sumiriwalla said that he was in a meeting while Chief Operating Officer Manish Kumar did not respond after initially saying that he would give reasons why India did not get three bronze.
“It was clear from the (individual) results sheet of Asian Athletics Association that India should get three team bronze but will tell you later the reason why it was not so,” he told PTI. He did not clarify why India did not get the medals.
In the senior women’s category, Bahrain runners grabbed all the three podium positions while India’s Sanjivani Jadhav, Swati Gadhave and Manisha Salunkhe finished 7th, 10th and 17th.
This should have got India 34 (7+10+17) points in the team standings behind Bahrain (1+2+3=6 points), whose runners took the top three spots, and China (32 points) -- whose three runners finished 8th, 11th and 13th. But only Bahrain and China were handed gold and silver respectively.