Gymnast Pranati Nayak, Asian bronze medallist in vault, will get the continental quota to compete in the Tokyo Olympic Games in July-August. Since the Asian Championships, scheduled in the last week of May in Tokyo, has been cancelled due to the Covid pandemic, the unused continental quotas will be reallocated to the eligible athletes from the Asian zone only.
As per the rules, Sri Lanka’s Elpitiya Badalge Dona Milka Geh is the first reserve for the Asian quota while Pranati is the second reserve. Both will, however, compete in the Olympics, starting July 23.
The world body in gymnastics (FIG) will make an official announcement in this regard in June.
“It’s a big day in my life. I never thought I would get a chance to compete in the Olympics as there was no competition in 2020. And this year too due to pandemic all the major competitions have been cancelled," Pranati told IANS of the development.
Since the quota place is allocated by name, it can’t be changed. “Hopefully I will get official communication from the Asian or the world body soon," Pranati said.
This year, the Asian Gymnastics Championships, which was an Olympic qualification event, was cancelled due to the pandemic. The performance of the 2019 Asian Championships held in Mongolia was taken into account to reallot the quotas.
“I had won bronze in vault during Asian meet in Mongolia in June 2019. That performance has helped me earn a quota place for the Olympics," Pranati pointed out.