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HindustanTimes Thu,31 Jul 2014

Athletics

No credentials but AFI wants Sangwan
Navneet Singh, Hindustan Times
New Delhi, March 25, 2012
First Published: 00:42 IST(25/3/2012)
Last Updated: 02:30 IST(25/3/2012)

The issue of the appointment of discus thrower Anil Kumar Sangwan as coach-cum-trainer of shot-putter Om Prakash, who has qualified for the London Olympics, is getting more curious by the day.

Despite Prakash, currently training in Hungary, having two foreign coaches to guide him, the Athletics Federation of India (AFI) is pushing Sangwan's case.

It's been more than three months since AFI recommended the name of the former international discus thrower, who is also camping in Hungary, but the proposal has been kept on hold, as the federation is yet to explain why it wants another coach for Prakash.

Sangwan's association with Hungary - he has trained all his life in the country - is well known but what is intriguing is the fact that despite the Sports Authority of India (SAI) not giving the former international the nod, the AFI has not let up in its effort to make him coach.

AFI director ML Dogra told HT that he was clueless why SAI was delaying Sangwan's appointment. He refused to comment when asked why the federation was pushing for Sangwan.

Last July, Prakash had qualified for the Games with a throw of 20.04metres in Hungary. He was considered a medal prospect at the 2010 Commonwealth Games but failed. He also failed to give an encouraging performance in the 2010 Asian Games. But the AFI is sure he will do wonders in London.

Generally, SAI doesn't question federations on their choice of coaches, but in Sangwan's case, the government body has asked for his coaching credentials.

SAI, it is learnt, has asked for Sangwan's coaching background, the throwers he has trained and their achievements at the national and international level.

A senior SAI official said that since the AFI had not furnished the details, the proposal was pending. SAI executive director (Teams), PC Kashyap, said, "My department isn't averse to clearing Sangwan, but we need solid reasons for doing so."

Man with a chequered past


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