Warped policies seem to be a way with the Indian Golf Union (IGU). If sending a squad, whose members are in violation of amateur status rules (as Hindustan Times had reported earlier) for the Asian Games isn't shameful enough, another development has shown the governing body in poor light.
A day before the golfers get to work at Guangzhou's Dragon Lake Golf Club, HT has learnt that national coach, Peter Murphy, has written to the IGU questioning the players' "attitude". Murphy, who has been appointed keeping the Asiad in mind, accompanied the men's team to the World Amateur Team Championships (held in Argentina from 16-31 October) for the Eisenhower Cup, and came away severely disappointed. Not only did the trio of Rashid Khan, Abhijit Chadha and Rahul Bajaj fare miserably (see box), their attitude prompted Murphy to write to Jaydeep Chitlangia, chairman of the selection committee.
"This was my first trip to a team competition and I could see a change in attitude as to how they conducted themselves whilst competing internationally as a team. The planning for the trip to Argentina needed some consideration…. With no flexibility to the practice schedule, the team lacked sufficient time to adjust and responded with a lethargic approach…… I feel there is a mentality amongst all players that needs to change when it involves representing their country and travelling overseas. There seems to be a sense of accomplishment just to make the team, which is understandable, but there is a lack of mental discipline to hold themselves accountable for their own performances…. Practice and pre-tournament preparation are important but without support from the individual's desire to perform, a good result will be difficult to get," Murphy wrote.
He came up with remedial measures, but given IGU's style of functioning, the advice could be in vain. “The results the players achieved do not change their standing within the order of merit. This adjustment needs to be made so that all international rounds count towards their order of merit standing…… If a player is aware that each round played during international competition counts toward his standing on the order of merit, you would see an increased urgency to perform well….. You must change the mentality of the players and hold them more responsible for their international performances to see some improvement. Practice and pre-tournament preparation are important but without support from the individual's desire to perform a suitable result will be difficult.”
Despite several phone calls and SMSs, Chitlangia could not be reached for a reaction.