Anju Bobby George laments slow change in government attitude towards athletes | other sports | Hindustan Times
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Anju Bobby George laments slow change in government attitude towards athletes

India are yet to win an athletics medal at the Olympics and Anju Bobby George said winning one wasn’t easy as there were athletes from 72 other countries challenging, who were better equipped

other sports Updated: Mar 24, 2018 09:05 IST
Sharad Deep
Anju Bobby George is a 2003 World Championships bronze medallist in long jump.
Anju Bobby George is a 2003 World Championships bronze medallist in long jump.(PTI)

A day after writing an emotional letter to the sports ministry after being asked to step down as national observer for athletics over conflict of interest, former long jumper Anju Bobby George claimed on Friday that sportspersons had expected more from the government after Olympics silver medallist Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore was made union sports minister.

“Expectations of sportspersons from the government have grown but expecting an immediate change is not correct. Rathore has been a great sportsperson and knows the pain and agony of sportspersons well,” said Anju, who was finalist in the 2004 Athens Olympics where Rathore won silver in double trap.

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“We should give more time to him so that he can take control of things,” added the 2003 world championships bronze medallist. Anju Bobby George was asked to step down citing her association with an upcoming athletics academy.

Anju was speaking to the media on the sidelines of a sports meet here on Friday. India are yet to win an athletics medal at the Olympics and Anju said winning one wasn’t easy as there were athletes from 72 other countries challenging.

“We are far behind in terms of facilities for athletes,” she said.

Anju hoped Indian athletes would do well at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, starting on April 4.

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“I hope young javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra has the capability of winning a medal at the CWG, besides the women’s relay team. This time the number of medals may increase, but I am not sure about the exact figure,” saidAnju, who won bronze at the 2002 CWG and gold at the Asian Games that year.

On the doping menace in global athletics, Anju said she will continue to wage a battle. “Dope has tarnished the careers of many good athletes world over, and many couldn’t get medals despite excelling.”