India’s men’s 4x400m relay team left their mark at the 2023 World Athletics Championships in Budapest, Hungary, securing a commendable fifth-place finish with a clocked time of 2 minutes and 59.92 seconds in the finals, as mentioned in India Today.
The journey to this thrilling race began with Muhammed Anas Yahiya, hailing from Nilamel, Kerala, who laid a strong foundation with his steady stride. The USA’s Hall swiftly took the lead from Great Britain, showcasing his impressive skills on the track.
However, a twist in the tale occurred during the second lap when Amoj Jacob, representing India, faced a less than ideal turnover, finding himself second to last. It was a moment of challenge, but India wasn’t ready to back down. Muhammad Ajmal Variyathodi exhibited his brilliance as he overtook a Dutch competitor, securing the third-to-last position. The real game-changer emerged in the form of Rajesh Ramesh, the youngest member of the team born in Tamil Nadu in 1999. Despite facing setbacks due to injuries and the Covid-19 pandemic, Ramesh put up a praiseworthy performance, propelling India to fifth place with a final time of 2:59.92s.
Muhammed Anas Yahiya, who initially ventured into long jump, later switched to 400m running and made history by becoming the third Indian to qualify for the 2016 Olympics in this event. Holding the national 400m record of 45.24 seconds set in 2019, Yahiya boasts an impressive collection of four gold medals and three silver medals from various tournaments.
Amoj Jacob, born in Delhi in 1998, specializes in the 400m and 800m track events. With two medals at the 2016 Asian Junior Championships and a key role in the record-breaking 2023 World Athletics Championships team, Jacob’s star continues to rise.
Muhammad Ajmal Variyathodi, a native of Palakkad, Kerala, initially began his sports journey in football before transitioning to 100m sprinting and ultimately specializing in the 400m sprint. His victory in the Indian Championships in Bhubaneshwar in June 2023, clocking 45.51 seconds, was a testament to his dedication and skill.
The Indian men’s 4x400m relay team’s journey was nothing short of exceptional, culminating in the shattering of the Asian record with a time of 2:59.05 seconds during the qualifiers. This historic achievement secured their place in the final round of the World Championships, surpassing the previous Asian record of 2:59.51 seconds held by Japan. Their remarkable performance not only showcased their determination but also marked a significant milestone for Indian athletics on the global stage.