Over 900 athletes to compete in national championships

Kolkata, Sep 9 (IANS) Around 950 athletes from all over the country are set to compete in the 55th National Open Athletic Championship to be staged at the Sports Authority of India (SAI) Salt Lake campus from September 16 to 19.

Top athletes like Tintu Luka, Dutee Chand – who was recently cleared to compete after a gender test – will feature in the four-day event organised by the West Bengal Athletics Association (WBAA).

Thirty-three affiliate units of the Athletics Federation of India including 55 competitors now busy in the national would compete for laurels in 45 medal categories.

The inauguration will be held on the September 16 with former Supreme Court Chief Justice Altamas Kabir being the chief guest.

Track and field legend P.T. Usha and former national coach Joginder Singh will be presented with lifetime achievement awards during the opening.

“There will be 33 affiliated units which will participate this year. Our budget is around Rs.45 lakhs ,” WBAA president Prasun Mukherjee told reporters here on Wednesday.

“We have arranged for the accommodation of the teams in the Salt Lake stadium’s air-conditioned dormitories and other hotels,” he said.

During the press conference, the jersey of the West Bengal team was also unveiled with team captain Shashi Bhusan Singh flaunting the white and blue attire.

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