United States athlete Justin Robinson on Sunday admitted that he was left stunned by the Indain team's performance in the 4x400m relay at the 2023 World Athletics Championships in Budapest.
The history makers
The Indian quartet of Muhammed Anas Yahiya, Amoj Jacob, Muhammed Ajmal Variyathodi and Rajesh Ramesh finished second in heat number one behind USA (2:58.47) to make it to the final for the first time in history of the tournament.
The Indian team also broke the Asian record by clocking 2 minute 59.05 seconds. The previous Asian record of 2:59.51 was held by the Japanese team.
Indians lose close race to USA
The Indians gave the world record holders Americans a run for their money, finishing closely behind them.
And that is exactly why Robinson was left surprised as India is not known for its performance in track and field.
"I was thinking I'll conserve some energy for the final. But then I could feel something coming up behind me. I didn't know it was an Indian.
"But I knew this wasn't ok. I was like, 'This isn't right!' So, I had to turn it up," said Robinson.
India eventually finished second overall also after the two heats, behind USA, but ahead of strong teams like Great Britain (3rd; 2:59.42) and Jamaica (5th; 2:59.82).
The top three finishers in each of the two heats and the next two fastest qualify for the final. (With PTI inputs)