Keen to make an impression a year after her doping ban ended in July 2013, India's premier athlete Ashwini Akkunji is eyeing a medal in the individual 400 meter hurdle at the upcoming Commonwealth Games.
Ashwini failed to bag a medal in the individual 400m hurdle at the 2010 Delhi edition of Games.
"I will try my level best to win a medal and possibly a gold in the individual event that I will be competing in. The competition this time is harder but my timing has been good," said Ashwini.In the 54th National Inter-State Athletics Championships, Ashwini was in excellent form as she excelled in 400m hurdles with a new meet record of 57.43 seconds in sweltering Lucknow heat (45 degrees celsius). Her new timing erased Jauna Murmu's four-year-old mark by three-hundredth of a second.
Ashwini said although she and other athletes have been practicing hard, they lack international exposure: "We have practiced hard and our preparation has been good but we lack international exposure. I personally believe that participating in more and more international events augers well for any athlete and that's what gives them a winning edge," said the 5'9" athlete.