The Indian boxers who will be representing the country in the Commonwealth Games in October and the Asian Games at Guangzhou in November gave mixed reactions on Tuesday on their preparation. While all of them said preparations were moving in the right direction, they felt things could have been better had the facilities been better.
“All of us are training hard for the two Games and hope to do well for the country. What I am concerned about is the place where we are training in Patiala, it does not even have air conditioners and it is tough to train in this hot weather,” said boxer Vijender Kumar on the sidelines of an event organised by the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) and Samsung.
However, there were some who said things were improving.
“A few years ago, we did not even have proper training shoes. Compared to that, things have improved with sponsors coming forward to support us,” said boxer Akhil Kumar. Other sportspersons who were present were wrestlers Sushil Kumar and Ramesh Kumar, who are among the 10 chosen by Samsung for scholarships for training.
Sushil and Ramesh were happy with their preparation but refused to comment on the progress at the Games’ venues.
“As a sportsperson I am positive of winning medals for the country but I can’t comment on the Commonwealth Games preparations. That is the job of the officials,” said Ramesh. IOA president, Suresh Kalmadi, and secretary general, Randhir Singh, chipped in by expressing confidence that the country would turn in a strong performance at the Games.
Players chosen by Samsung for their ‘Sports Ratna Programme’ include shooters Abhinav Bindra, Gagan Narang, Manavjit Singh Sandhu and Ronjan Sodhi, boxers Vijender Kumar, Akhil Kumar, Nanao Singh Thakchom, Suranjoy Singh and wrestlers Sushil Kumar and Ramesh Kumar.