Indian women pugilists may be taking big strides but that does not mean they can always escape official apathy.
International women boxers attached to the Sports Authority of India (SAI) centre, Hisar (Haryana), are worried ahead of a national tournament next month after the only coach at the centre was shifted out.
Along with a Centre of Excellence (CoE), the SAI also runs a day-boarding scheme in Hisar, which has become the feeder line for the national women’s team. It has produced many outstanding boxers, including Pinky Jangra, a silver medallist in the Asia Cup last month and an Olympic hopeful.
About 50-odd trainees have been left in the lurch after SAI transferred Raj Singh, the lone boxing coach attached to the centre for over a decade, to Lucknow. Pavitra, an international, said: “Without a good coach, we would be slipping backward,” said the winner of a silver medal in the Asia Cup.
The SAI had posted Anoop Kumar, a Dronacharya awardee, to the centre in 2004. But he has rarely visited Hisar since becoming the national women’s coach.
BS Rajput, a coach based in Ahmedabad’s state coach centre, was named as replacement for Raj Singh, but has expressed his inability on medical grounds. However, SAI’s head of coaching, Sanjay Saraswat, said: “We expect a new coach to join the centre shortly.”