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Mayookha confident of bettering her personal best at Olympics

July 22, 2012 17:36 IST

Realistic about her chances in the Olympics, Indian triple-jumper Mayookha said she is targetting a top-six finish in London by improving her personal best effort.

Very few Indians have made it to the final round in Olympics track and field events and Mayookha said that it would be an achievement if she makes the grade in London.

Mayookha"I don't want to promise big things. I want to qualify for the final round and that would be a big thing. My target is to finish in top six," she said.

Qualifying for the final round would not be easy for Mayookha, who holds the national record of 14.11m recorded in the Asian Championships last year.

Her best outdoor effort this year has been 13.57m according to the IAAF rankings though she has a season's best of 13.95m in indoor competitions.

Her outdoor best of the season would not even put her among the top 100 in the IAAF list but Mayookha remains confident that she can improve in London.

"I am confident of doing better than my personal best. I am crossing 14m at the training though I would not want to have a target distance in London," said Mayookha, who qualified for Olympics with a 14.11m effort in Kobe, Japan in 2011.

"I did 14.10m recently in a competition in Berlin. My preparations were satisfactory and I am looking forward to do my best in London," she said.

Mayookha was among the three Indian athletes who were asked to prove their fitness by the Athletics Federation of India to compete in the London Games but she said that the issue cropped up due to miscommunication with the AFI.

"We were training here and we did not know that we have to prove fitness. I have no injury issues. It was a case of miscommunication. But I have proved my fitness now with the Berlin event," she said.

Her coach Shyam Kumar said Mayookha had a slight heel injury after the Asian Grand Prix in May in Thailand where she competed in long jump also but insisted that it has healed completely.

"She had a slight heel injury after the Asian Grand Prix but it has healed now and she is doing above 14m consistently at training. She has the talent and she can do better than what she is doing now," he said.

Mayookha reached the final round in the long jump event of the World Championships in South Korea last year, a rare feat in Indian athletics, but Shyam Kumar feels that his ward is more suited for triple jump.

"She has the talent and physique to be a very good triple jumper. She is more suited to triple jump than long jump. She competed in long jump in the World Championships as she qualified for that. Now she has qualified for the Olympics in triple jump and she will do well," he said.

Mayookha, who plans to enter the London Games Village on August 1, was unhappy that Shyam Kumar has not been included in the Indian contingent as coach.

"I had wanted my coach to be there in London. But he is not going to be there and my performance may be affected," she said.

The AFI, however, said that all the personal coaches of the 14 athletes who have qualified for the Olympics cannot be in the Indian contingent as only four quotas are given by the Indian Olympics Association under rules.

Photograph: Kiyoshi Ota / Getty Images

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