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Tejaswin Shankar included in CWG squad by AFI

National Record-holding high jumper Tejaswin Shankar has been finally included in the Indian athletics squad for the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games, as per the AFI's message to Delhi HC.

Tejaswin Shankar (Source: TrackTown USA/Twitter)

Tejaswin Shankar had initially been left out of the CWG squad because he had not competed in India (Kansas State University)


The Bridge Desk

Updated: 6 July 2022 5:58 AM GMT

High jumper Tejaswin Shankar has been included in the athletics squad for the upcoming Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games after being initially omitted by the Athletics Federation of India (AFI).

The national record-holder has been taken in the team in place of quarter-miler Arokia Rajiv, who failed a fitness test this week, the federation told the Delhi High Court on Wednesday.

Tejaswin had moved court after being left out from the squad despite meeting the AFI qualification standard of 2.27 metres and also being a National Record holder in his event. The AFI had excluded Shankar as he had skipped the Inter-State Championships and was participating at the NCAA, where he also fetched gold at the event in Oregon, the same place where the World Championships will be held next week.

Shankar's lawyer Malak Bhatt had asked the Delhi HC to look into the matter. The court had then directed the AFI to consider Tejaswin Shankar for the squad earlier in June. In its reply, AFI had admitted that Tejaswin was a medal prospect at the CWG but that their hands were tied because of limited quota places allocated by the Indian Olympic Association (IOA).

Responding on the matter, the court had come down hard on AFI earlier this week, telling the federation to not pick and choose selection rules arbitrarily. The court had said that there were some in the selected contingent who had not fulfilled the selection critieria while Tejaswin - who had fulfilled it - was not in the squad.

Arokia Rajiv had been named as part of the 4x400m relay team alongside Amoj Jacob, Noah Nirmal Tom, Muhammed Ajmal, Naganathan Pandi and Rajesh Ramesh. He, however, did not do well in the trials for the World Championships and will also be skipping the retrials scheduled for Friday for the Oregon event.

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