Indian archery coach Limba Ram is unhappy with the team’s preparation for the upcoming Asian Games in China, where they are up for an “extremely tough challenge.”
Talking to PTI ahead of their departure, Limba said his archers were robbed of practice due to at least a dozen felicitations for their overwhelming show in the Commonwealth Games.
“I’m really worried. We did not get any time after the Commonwealth Games for training. It’s difficult to say we are confident of a good show in the Asian Games,” Limba said.
With no compound event, there will be four gold medals up for grabs in the recurve section and India will be eyeing the men’s team gold in a field boasting of world champions Korea, Japan, Chinese Taipei and hosts China, Limba said.
Thus, if the Indian coach is to be believed, the dream run may come to an end for the archers who are fresh from their three gold, one silver and four bronze medals earnings at Delhi 2010.
The coach has left it to luck and hopes the archers live up to the reputation.
“It’s not in my hands. I leave it to the their luck on the given day. I have given my best effort, but every time they assemble for practice, they are called for a felicitation -- in Delhi, Kolkata, Jamshedpur and all over,” Limba said.
“Our main hope will be the men’s team who have a chance to win a gold. China will be very tough at home and they will not give up easily, so will be the opponents from Korea, Chinese Taipei and Japan. We have to fight our way out.”
India men’s team had won a gold medal in China during the World Cup Stage IV at Shanghai in September.
India will also have chances in individual section where Commonwealth Games gold medal winning duo of Rahul Banerjee and Deepika Kumari and bronze medallists Dola Banerjee and Jayanta Talukdar would give the country some hope, Limba said.
The coach also pointed out that there would be a change in format for the archers in the Asian Games where there will be a FITA round followed by an Olympic round.
The archers will also have to withstand the cold and breezy condition there.
“It’s quite cold there. It will be windy but we have to cope up to the conditions,” he said.
For the coach, the Asian Games mean a lot as his contract with the Archery Association of India (AAI) will get over after the conclusion of the event.
The 16th Asian Games will be held from November 12-27 with the archery competition starting on November 19.