It is often said that nowhere in life the finest margins are as routine as in the world of sports. The barest of differences in time and distance can have the biggest of impacts. Such was the case in the recent Settecolli International Trophy event in Rome.
Indian swimmer Srihari Nataraj scaled heights greater than ever before in the Men's 100m Backstroke category. However, despite achieving his personal best timing of 53.90 seconds, Srihari Nataraj agonizingly missed out on the Olympic A qualification mark. The margin, you ask? 0.05 seconds.
No Indian swimmer has managed to secure Olympic qualification by the A quota before. The sporting community in the country believed that the 20-year-old from Bengaluru would be the first to break that jinx. However, that dream remains unfulfilled for now.
A couple of days ago, the Swimming Federation of India had nominated Srihari Nataraj for the Universality quota at the Tokyo Olympics. Nataraj had also achieved a B qualification mark of 54.07 seconds at the Uzbekistan Open Championships. The Olympic A qualification mark in 100m backstroke is 53.85 seconds.
Meanwhile, fellow Indian swimmer Advait Page also set a personal best timing of 15:23.66 minutes in Men's 1500m Freestyle Swimming Event in Los Angeles. The Olympic A qualification mark in this category is 15:00.99 minutes. Page also achieved the B qualification mark in Men's 800m Freestyle with a timing of 8:00.76.