‘Elite players have certain requirements’ | india | Hindustan Times
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‘Elite players have certain requirements’

Suresh Kalmadi, the Indian Olympic Association president, is no stranger to playing the role of a peacemaker. In much the same way that he helped sign a truce between Hockey India and the revolting players, Kalmadi has also been acting as a liaison between the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) and Abhinav Bindra, reports Moonmoon Ghosh.

india Updated: Jan 21, 2010 00:23 IST
Moonmoon Ghosh

Suresh Kalmadi, the Indian Olympic Association president, is no stranger to playing the role of a peacemaker. In much the same way that he helped sign a truce between Hockey India and the revolting players, Kalmadi has also been acting as a liaison between the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) and Abhinav Bindra.

“Abhinav is the lone Indian Olympic medallist and the symbol of the youth,” Kalmadi said, after meeting the shooter’s father at the headquarters of the Organising Committee 2010 Commonwealth Games on Wednesday. “We will do everything we can to further Abhinav’s prospects and he has our full support.”

The IOA chief also said a permanent solution needed to be worked out regarding the eligibility of shooters to participate in international tournaments.

“We want more medals from him. A permanent solution has to be reached,” Kalmadi said. “We have to be more professional and treat players with respect. Elite players have certain requirements and we have to respect that,” he added.

The 2008 gold-medallist will now participate in the Belgrade World Cup in May, after he threatened to quit the sport due to NRAI’s insistence to be present for trials.

AS Bindra, his father, said, “I have one agenda in the interest of the nation — all elite shooters training in different places should have a uniform criteria of selection.”

He also stressed upon better communication between the federations and players. “The IOA should ensure that there is proper communication with the players, so one knows what the other is doing,” Bindra Sr said.

Explaining the pressures faced by Abhinav, his father said, “Abhinav isn’t asking for financial help or pointing fingers. His only wish is that his training shouldn’t be affected,” he said. Abhinav’s coach, who is the chief of sports sciences at the University of Munich, is responsible for chalking out his training schedule.

The shooter will decide upon the further course of action after discussions with his coach.