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Ray of hope in ‘touch’ of Bolt

Mumbai: Odisha sprinter Amiya Mallick, who won the men’s 200m in National Open Athletics Championships in Ranchi last September, is set to train under Jamaican sprint king Usain Bolt’s coach Glen Mills, with an aim to make it to the Indian squad for two major meets later this year.

“In 200m, I clocked 21.22 recently in Ranchi. I am aiming for the 2014 Commonwealth and Asian Games. On January 12 I am going to Jamaica to train under Usain Bolt’s coach for four months,” he said at the Indian Oil Corporation’s media meet here.

“My aim is to do better in the 200 metres. When I go there, I will work with the coaches to improve on the timing. I know that if I improve my time by even a fraction of a second, I will qualify for the Asian and Commonwealth Games. I am also looking to work on my fitness. I will talk to the coaches about how to improve my fitness and stamina.

“If I am lucky to break the current Indian national record of 20.73 seconds, I am confident I will win a medal at the Asian Games too,” said the 21-year old Odisha athlete who is employed with IOL.

Mallick said his state association is sponsoring and sending him to Jamaica and he would be leaving on January 12. “My state association is sending me there and they have communicated with them,” he said.

Asked if he had sought permission from Athletics Federation of India, Mallick said: “We don’t have any camps right now, so I am free to go. I think the state association might have taken the permission.”

Mallick said he will try and build on his strength and endurance level when he is at Racers Track Club — the institute founded by Mills in Jamaica.

India’s top-ranked shuttler P Kashyap, who was at the meet, said he was aiming to remain injury free with three major events — the Commonwealth Games, World Championships and the Asian Games being held this year.

“It is a very important year. I just want to stay injury free. In the last part of 2013 I had lot of injuries in the end. I would plan my tournaments better and train a lot more and prepare for those three games,” said Kashyap.

“Especially the Commonwealth, World Championships and Asian Games are all to be held within 20 days’ gap, so I need to be physically fit to do my best in those tournaments,” he added.

The CWG will be held in Glasgow, Scotland, from July 21 to August 4, followed by the Worlds at Copenhagen in Denmark. The Asian Games, will be held in Incheon, South Korea, from September 28 to October 5.