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Avantika hails Khelo India Youth Games for supporting young athletes

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Pune, Dec 21: Avantika Narale initially made headlines when she rewrote Dutee Chand's 200m junior national record last year, but the sprinter was again in the news when she won a gold and silver in the 100m and 200m respectively in the Asian Youth Athletics Championship earlier this year.

Recovering from a hamstring injury Avantika is eager to get back on the track as soon as possible. "Currently I'm training on my endurance and my action. Last year my endurance wasn't great, this year it has improved. If endurance improves then I carry my action till the end," said Avanatika who is one of the ambassadors of the Khelo India Youth Games Assam 2020.

During the Khelo India Youth Games 2019 in Pune, the sprinter did not start the 100m dash after she failed to hear the gun. A few months down the line in May, eager to prove a point, the sprinter found herself occupying the starting grid at the Asian Youth Athletics Championship in Hong Kong. 

The 17-year-old finished the 100m dash with a timing of 11.97sec clinching gold and a silver in the 200m event with a timing of 24.20 seconds, the same as her junior national record. She also won silver in the medley relay.

"My target is to be fully functional and fit by the Asian Junior Athletics Championship which is to be held in Thailand in May. I want to perform well there and make sure I defend my medals. I hope one day I can participate in the Olympics," added Avantika.

The Pune athlete was all praise of the Khelo India Youth Games and said it is an event that is needed to tap out talent at a very young age. 

"The initiative helps athletes who want to excel at a young age but don't have the money. Every young athlete from the country now yearns to be at the Games and show everybody that they are talented. Some athletes have even received scholarship from the government because of the Games. It is great that the government is supporting young athletes," added Avantika.

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