Long-distance running coach Nikolai Snesarev won’t oversee India’s Tokyo Olympics campaign as he has resigned from his position despite his contract running till 2020.

According to The Indian Express report, the 70-year-old Belarusian wanted to focus on 3,000m steeplechase national record holder Avinash Sable for the Olympics but the latter decided to train under his army coach.

Sable, under the guidance of Snesarev, had bettered Gopal Saini’s 37-year-old steeplechase record at the Open National Championships last year.

No other athlete, according to the report, is training under Snesarev.

“Snesarev was keen to continue coaching Sable. In September, he had given Sable a detailed training programme to follow in the off-season and was to travel with the athlete to the Issyk-Kul region in Kyrgyzstan for a camp from December,” the report quoted an anonymous Athletics Federation of India official.

“Snesarev had also said that he did not need support staff as he was training only one athlete with a focus on the World Championship and the Olympics. However, all of a sudden Sable decided that he did not want to train with Snesarev,” the official added.

Snesarev, in a letter to the AFI last year, had said, “It looks like [Sable] is permanently following the guidance of his army coach Mr Amrish Kumar, who wants Sable to leave the group of Dr Nikolai Snesarev.”

Several Indian athletes, including Lalita Babar, Sudha Singh and OP Jaisha, have trained under Snesarev.