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Players lament lack of sporting facilities

india Updated: Jul 26, 2011 00:12 IST
Divya Sethi
Divya Sethi
Hindustan Times
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Despite being home to several national-level sportspersons, the Millennium City lacks the basic facilities required for holding indoor games even as young players depend on hired venues to continue practise.

Professional players as well as aspiring sportspersons complain that Gurgaon has no space for games like table tennis and chess.

Organisers of sports events have to hire playgrounds and auditoriums of private schools to host tournaments.

They say the so-called industrial hub that generates about 50% of the total revenue of Haryana does not have proper infrastructure when it comes to sports, though it has produced many national and international players.

“No one can understand how we groom young players in the absence of proper infrastructure. We sometimes practise in private schools or at our homes after installing the required equipment,” said Naresh Sharma, general secretary, District Table Tennis Association.

Manuj Bhardwaj (25), who has represented Haryana in various table tennis tournaments, said: “There is no place where a player can practise. I still remember how I used to go to Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Delhi for practice by bus some 11 years ago. I was given an assurance that soon there would be venues for indoor games but so far it remains a mere announcement.”

Ajit Kotia whose eight-year-old daughter Tanishka Kotia has been listed in the Limca Book of Records for being the youngest chess player also expressed similar concerns.

“There is no place where a child can practise in Gurgaon. But we cannot let budding talent suffer in the absence of facilities so we make our daughter practise at home,” he said.

However, according to the administration, the city will soon have separate stadiums for indoor and outdoor games.

“We have already forwarded request letters to the sports minister and Haryana Urban Development Authority (Huda) asking whether an indoor sports stadium can be constructed in the Tau Devi Lal complex. We have also prepared an estimate and are planning to have one more stadium. The moment we get permission, we will start construction,” said district sports officer Kulwinder Singh.