Sport

Fouaad Mirza Seals Olympic Berth, Ends Nearly 20 Year Wait

New Delhi: Double Asian Video games medallist equestrian Fouaad Mirza secured an Olympic quota after ending because the top-ranked rider in his group within the qualifiers, ending a wait spanning almost twenty years.

The 27-year-old was the highest-ranked rider in Group G for South East Asia, Oceania within the particular person eventing class after the top of the Europe stage earlier this month.

Nevertheless, the official affirmation might be introduced by the Worldwide Equestrian Federation (FEI) on February 20.

Imtiaz Anees (2000 Sydney) and Late Wing Commander IJ Lamba (1996 Atlanta) are the one Indians to have represented the nation on the Olympics.

Mirza, who was honoured with the Arjuna Award in August, completed with a complete of 64 factors from six qualifying occasions.

He scored 34 factors on his first horse Fernhill Facetime and 30 along with his second horse Touchingwood.

“I had an idea that I was in the reckoning for the quota but had to wait for China and Thailand to qualify as teams. Both of them qualified last week in Italy. If these two countries had not qualified as teams they would have taken up the individual slots and I wouldn’t have got the Olympic berth,” Mirza advised PTI from Germany.

The riders needed to compete at 4-star degree tournaments for Olympic {qualifications}. Based mostly on an elaborate rating system, a rider-horse duo collects factors by collaborating in tournaments all year long.

To achieve factors the rider has to complete within the prime 25 % of the variety of opponents collaborating within the match. The upper the athlete is ranked within the competitors the extra factors he will get.

“I am elated but there’s still enough work to be done. It’s one tick out of the many boxes. Now we have to prepare the best we can and enter the competition in top form,” Mirza stated.

Earlier this 12 months, Mirza’s prime horse Seigneur Medicott had suffered an harm, denting the Asian Video games silver medallists possibilities of qualification. However the horses have labored out effectively for Mirza.

“I miss my main horse, but the two new ones are doing well. They have worked out for me. They aren’t as good as Medicott but I am pleased to see how the season has progressed with them. They have worked well to come this far and to reach this level,” Mirza stated.

Mirza shot to fame when he grew to become the primary Indian since 1982 to win an Asian Video games particular person medal in equestrian apart from guiding the nation to a second-place end within the crew competitors in Jakarta final 12 months.

“I am very grateful to the Embassy Group and Mr Jitu Virwani for giving me the opportunity to qualify for the Games. They have funded the entire project and Mr Virwani and the Embassy Group were behind the success at the Asian Games,” he stated.

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