Summary of sports events and persons who made news on Saturday
Indian Olympic Association's proposal to withdraw from the 2022 Commonwealth Games was not put up for approval of Executive Council as it would have amounted to jumping the gun before a crucial meeting between CGF and the ISSF top brass, President Narinder Batra said on Saturday.
Batra had in July proposed the boycott of the Birmingham Games in protest against dropping of shooting from the roster.
After a meeting with the visiting officials of the Commonwealth Games Federation earlier this month Batra had said the Executive Council, which met on Saturday, and the General Body of the IOA will take a decision on the matter.
Batra said that the IOA will wait for meeting between the CGF top brass and the officials of the international shooting body (ISSF) early next month in Munich before taking any decision.
"The CGF officials are meeting the ISSF officials in Munich on December 7. We have said that whatever parallel shooting event they are conducting, the medals should be counted to India's final medal tally of the 2022 CWG. The CGF will get back to us and we will wait for that," Batra said after the IOA Executive Council meeting in New Delhi.
"As of now we are in the same situation. We have not put up the withdrawal issue for approval before the Executive Council. We do not want to go in any positive or negative mode. We will take a decision according to the response of the CGF (after their meeting with ISSF)," he added.
Batra also said the boycott proposal may not be put up before the IOA Annual General Meeting next month as a response from the CGF is likely to take time.
"This issue is also unlikely to come up during the AGM as CGF response will come after one or one-and-a-half month. So, getting approval (of India's withdrawal from 2022 CWG) will be like jumping the gun before any response from the CGF and it is not right," the IOA chief said.
During the press conference with CGF chief Louise Martin and CEO David Grevemberg earlier this month, Batra had proposed that the medals India won from the proposed Commonwealth Shooting Championships be counted to the country's final tally of the Birmingham Games. The CGF had not given any commitment on this.
After receiving a letter from his Indian counterpart, British Sports Minister Nigel Adams had proposed the hosting of a Commonwealth Shooting Championships in or around the time of the 2022 CWG. The CGF had though said that such a Championships cannot be held in Britain three months prior to or after the CWG.
The IOA chief also made it clear that it would be a waste of time for the country's shooters to take part in the proposed Commonwealth Championship if the medals are not counted in India's tally in the 2022 Games.
"Whichever parallel event happens, the medals will have to counted. We are not interested in such an event if the medals are not added to India's 2022 CWG tally.
"Of course, it is for the NRAI to decide whether to take part in such a championships or not. But I feel if there is no medal counted in India's 2022 CWG tally, it will be just waste of time".
Asked about IOA Secretary General Rajeev Mehta's announcement that IOA would be interested in hosting the 2026 CWG, Batra said, "They (CGF) wanted us to host 2026 or 2030 CWG. Mehta had reacted on what they (CGF) had said.
"We said let us see what comes out of this shooting issue and others like lack of India's representation in the CGF, then let us see."
On the issue of Draft National Sports Code which the IOA had out rightly rejected, he said, "The sports ministry has sought names from the IOA's side to be included in the expert committee (to look into the Code afresh) and we have given the names. I am hoping that the committee will be formed this coming week or the next one."
The IOA was interested in hosting the IOC Session in 2023 but Batra said no business house in the country has so far come up to sponsor the prestigious event which will need funds to the tune of USD 8-9 million.
"We have met all the other parameters except for one. The only remaining thing pending now is the contract with the business house. We have not got any offer from any business house.
"IOA does not have any funding source, so we cannot bear the expense. We were expecting that letter of offer will come but still not come yet. If it does not come, we have decided that we have to say sorry (to the IOC)."
Batra also felt that with the high number of Indian athletes claiming 2020 Olympic quota, especially in shooting, the country may send around 125 participants for the Tokyo Games.
Batra said that for the 2020 Olympics, the federation has 72 numbers including athletes and support staff and it may rise to 125 members.
Lastly, he praised the Indian shooting contingent for their performance throughout the year.
"The way the shooting team is performing, it is a matter of honour and pride for us. It is really good that our country is winning medals, shooting contingent is performing really well and I think in Olympics mostly everyone has qualified for the respective events, and I think 21 medal prospects are there," Batra said.
Indian wrestlers win 6 gold in U-15 Asian C'ships
Indian wrestlers continued to shine at the Under-15 Asian Championships in Taichung, Chinese Taipei, as they bagged six gold medals on Saturday.
Led by 2019 cadet world champion Komal (39kg), the gold rush ensured that the Indian contingent now has a total of eight gold medals after beginning their campaign with a couple of gold on Friday.
While Komal, one of the fastest-rising Indian wrestling stars, lived up to the expectations, the other girls also impressed with both Saloni (33kg) and Babli (36kg) performing brilliantly to finish on the top podium.
All the three girls gave dominating display to stay undefeated in their respective categories.
The exploits of Indian freestyle wrestlers continued on Day 2 also as Akash performed brilliantly to beat Daiki Ogawa of Japan in the 48kg category. Akash's quick reflexes did not give any chance to the Japanese in the bout, as the Indian emerged 8-3 victorious.
Debutant Udit Kumar brought home a silver in 57kg to add to the bronze he won earlier in the year at the Cadet World Championships.
With Kapil too winning a bronze medal in 52kg, all the six Indian freestyle wrestlers in the squad have won a medal each. This has resulted in India leading the team rankings list with 125 points, followed by Kazakhstan with 120.
Greco-Roman turned out to be the biggest surprise of the day. The category, which has traditionally not been the strongest for India, proved to be the biggest hunting ground as all the four wrestlers won medals.
Ankit Gulia defeated Korganov of Kazakhstan to win the gold in the 68kg category. In 75kg, Chirag Dhalia clinched a gold by winning both his bouts. The other two Greco-Roman medals came in 62kg and 85kg when Sumit and Arshdeep Singh won a silver each.
Two days, three gold: Manavaditya Rathore on a roll at Nationals
Rajasthan's Manavaditya Singh Rathore on Saturday shot his way to his third gold medal at the Shotgun Nationals here, signing off from the junior level in style.
The 20-year-old Manavaditya, son of Athens Olympics silver medallist Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, combined with Anushka Singh Bhati to claim the top honours in the mixed team trap event at the Dr Karni Singh Shooting Range.
Anushka and Manavaditya, who had won the individual junior men's trap event as well as the team title on Friday, got the better of Madhya Pradesh's Priyanshu Pandey and Manisha Keer 3-2 in a shoot-off after both pairs were locked at 37 after the regulation 50 shots.
A student of Delhi University's Hansraj College, Manavaditya was delighted with the results he has achieved in his last year as a junior.
"This is the year I am making the transition from junior to senior, so it was a wonderful experience to win three gold medals at the Nationals," Manavaditya told PTI.
"It ensured that I sign off my last Nationals as junior in style. I am looking forward to continue to do well in the sport," he added.
Haryana won the junior mixed team trap competition when Bhowneesh Mendiratta and Kiran outgunned Delhi's Kabir Sharma and Kirti Gupta 47-40 in the gold medal match.
Russian federation names acting chief after suspensions
Russia's suspended athletics federation named an acting president on Saturday a day after the sport's global governing body halted its reinstatement process and raised the possibility of it being expelled altogether.
Yulia Tarasenko, a federation vice-president, was named acting president after a presidium meeting in Moscow, replacing Dmitry Shlyakhtin, who was among the seven people provisionally suspended by the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) this week for serious breaches of anti-doping rules. [nL8N28163A]
"The mood is not very cheerful. The situation at the federation is very difficult," Tarasenko, who also serves as the head of St Petersburg's athletics federation, told reporters.
"We think there is a chance to keep fighting for the federation because we have a large number of athletes and they shouldn't suffer."
Russia's athletics federation was suspended in 2015 over a report commissioned by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) that found evidence of mass doping in the sport and had since been trudging towards reinstatement.
This week, however, Shlyakhtin and other federation officials were provisionally suspended for having provided false explanations and forged documents to explain three whereabouts violations by Russian high jumper Danil Lysenko, the silver medallist at the 2017 world championships.
Shlyakhtin told reporters on Saturday he had handed his resignation to the federation's presidium.
The charges against Shlaykhtin and the six others prompted World Athletics, the global governing body of athletics formerly known as the IAAF, to suspend the federation's reinstatement process.
World Athletics said the taskforce overseeing Russia's efforts would make a recommendation on whether it should be expelled entirely and that it would revise the procedure used since 2016 to clear certain Russian athletes to compete internationally after they demonstrated they are training in a doping-free environment.
"Our main goal is to ensure that the athletes themselves don't suffer from this situation," said Yuri Borzakovsky, the 2004 Olympic 800 metres champion who is head coach of Russia's national athletics team.
In addition to the turmoil at its athletics federation, Russia's chances of competing at next year's Tokyo Olympics are in jeopardy after WADA's Compliance Review Committee recommended that Russian anti-doping agency RUSADA be suspended again.
The recommendation came after WADA discovered inconsistencies in laboratory data provided by Moscow this year.