CHENNAI: THE Uzbekistan swimming championships where top Indian swimmers participated has seemingly plunged into a controversy after SP Likith complained about discrepancy while recording timings. He alleged that the 100m freestyle heats on the first day and 100m butterfly heats on the final day were fudged to help host swimmers attain ‘A’ qualifying standards for the Tokyo Olympics.
Two Indian swimmers — Sajan Prakash and Adithya Dinesh — seem to have been caught in a sub-plot. According to the final start list in the 100m butterfly, Sajan clocked a ‘national record’ while Adithya would have cracked a ‘B’ qualification mark of Tokyo Olympics. Sajan’s timing of 52.74s would be better than the existing national mark of 52.77s set by Virdhawal Khade way back in 2009. However, none of these records have been ratified by the Swimming Federation of India because world swimming federation (FINA) is looking into the matter.
Though the records of two Uzbekistan swimmers’ were updated on FINA website, the records of Indians were not. It is understood that the SFI has taken up the issue with the Asian Swimming Association who in turn took it up with the FINA.
The swimmers, especially the ones who fared well at the event and are looking forward to the Olympics, are jittery. More so, because the results of two events have not been updated by FINA. It might affect their rankings. With so much uncertainty around, the swimmers are not sure if they would get another international meet. The FINA apparently is reviewing the competition and there is a possibility of nullifying the competition if they find some mischief. Scrapping means Indian swimmers’ participation would go waste.
SFI secretary Monal Choksi did acknowledge there was something wrong while recording time on the first day and the last day of the competition. “Our coaches spotted it and told the organizers that the results were not correct,” he said. “We have brought it to the notice of the Asian Swimming Association and who in turn has taken it up with the FINA.”