The new Director General of the Sports Authority of India (SAI), Jiji Thomson, on Monday said that the SAI needed to set up a monitoring system to track the campers and coaches at various training centres across the country.
Referring to the case in which boxers Vijender Singh and Ram Singh, who were part of the National camp at NIS Patiala, were embroiled in a drugs controversy, Thomson said he was concerned about the issue.
“I think monitoring is the most important thing. We must come up with a system where we scientifically monitor activities of the players, coaches and our officials,” said Thomson on the sidelines of a felicitation function of various medal winning archers and boxers here.
On Olympic medal winning boxer Vijender seeking extension of leave from the National camp following the drugs scandal, Thomson said, “We have not received any letter from him. If we receive, then whatever is permissible we will provide.”
Vijender was supposed to rejoin the camp by Tuesday. Sources in the National camp said there was no information about the ace boxer joining the camp on Tuesday.
Thomson, who took over as the SAI DG a week ago, said areas like appointment of more staff, procurement of equipment, upkeep and maintenance of the stadia needed attention. “But things cannot happen overnight. I need three months to set the house in order.”
Coach G. Manoharan, who led the Indian boxing team to the Asian youth championship in Subic Bay in Philippines, was satisfied with the four bronze medals.
“We cannot compare this with our last performance (where we bagged nine medals). There were a lot of close bouts which did not go our way. We were unlucky not to get points, otherwise things would have been different,” said Manoharan.
Lalitha Prasad (49kg), a World Youth medallist last year, said there was no impact on the boxers even though they had to fight under the International Boxing Association (AIBA) flag with no India jerseys owing to the suspension of the Indian Amateur Boxing Federation (IABF). “The competition level was tough and we gave our best,” he said.
Abhishek Beniwal (81kg), Amritpreet Singh (91kg) and Narender Berwal (+91kg) were the other medallists from the Asian youth championships.
Archery coach Dharmender Tiwari said the haul of eight medals, including two gold, in the Asian Grand Prix in Bangkok was a good performance. “This was a nice exposure trip for the young archers in the team. We should draw a plan and field archers as per the importance of the events.”
Korean coach Lim Chae Woong said there should be more talent hunt programmes with an aim to do well in the 2020 Olympics.
Seasoned archer Dola Banerjee, who was part of the women’s team that claimed a bronze medal, was happy with her comeback. “I had not taken part in any competition in last few months. I have to work harder and become fitter,” she said.