Indian middle-distance runner Jinson Johnson wants to participate in good quality competitions abroad as a part of his preparations for the 2021 Tokyo Olympics. The Kerala-based runner is a 2018 Asian Games gold medallist in the men’s 1500m event and silver medallist in the men’s 800m event.
Having suffered from a ruptured Achilles tendon, Indian runner Jinson Johnson was all set to return to action when the COVID-19 pandemic struck. After a year’s wait, the Kerala-based athlete is now gearing up for a qualification at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics but is not convinced to rush things at the moment. Johnson is not inclined to run in the Indian GP or the Federation Cup, rather he is planning to participate in good quality competitions abroad as a part of his preparations for the Games.
“The main event this year is the Olympics. So to prepare for it we must do things well with good, quality competition. Instead of immediately rushing into competition and participating in the Indian GP and the Federation Cup, I’m planning to participate in competitions in May and June to prepare for the Olympics. I would like to take part in some good competitions abroad and also the Inter-State meet in June,” said Jinson Johnson, as reported by Sportstar.
The Olympic qualification standard in the men’s 1500m event is 3:35:00, which is better than Jinson Johnson’s national record of 3:35:24. To seal a quota at the Games, the Indian needs to push his level in the upcoming competitions, or he must depend on world rankings to make a cut. But, Johnson feels that his training for the mega event is going well so far.
“My training is going on well. The (Tokyo) Olympics qualification standard in the 1500m is 3:35.00s, which is better than the national record (his own 3:35.24s which came in Berlin, September 2019) so you need to get quality competition to achieve that. My fitness should also be good then and I should do well to get that time,” explained the 2018 Asian Games gold medallist.