Even as the prestigious Sepaktakraw World Super Series begins in New Delhi on Thursday, the Indian team was hit by a controversy on Wednesday with four members being expelled by their state federation for taking part in the tournament without informing it.
Akash Singh in the men’s team and Kh Bijeta, Kh Omita and O Chaoba in the women’s team have been expelled for 10 years by All Manipur Sepak Takraw Association (AMSTA) for taking part in the national camp without informing their state unit.
Akash and Chaoba are trainees at SAI Regional Centre in Imphal while Bijeta and Omita play for IMSUC club.
“We have decided to expel them for 10 years for taking part in the national camp without informing us,” AMSTA president Kh Dorendra told PTI from Imphal.
Dorendra is also a deputy president of the Sepak Takraw Federation of India and the development points to a division in the STFI.
“We (AMSTA) have wanted a selection trial for the ISTAF World Super Series first leg in Delhi and second leg in Thailand (September 26-29) and also Kings Cup to be held in Thailand (from September 16-22) so that the country can have the best players to prepare for 2014 Asian Games,” he said.
“We wrote a letter regarding this to STFI Secretary after a decision by AMSTA executive committee but there was no trial and the team was selected without trial. Akash, Bijeta, Omita and Chaoba took part in the camp which began in Delhi from August 11 without informing us and so AMSTA decided to expel them for 10 years,” he added.
STFI Secretary Yogender Singh Dahiya on his part said that the players were selected from among the national campers who were picked after a selection trial during the 23rd Senior Nationals in November last year.
“We are having a long-term national camp since last year with an aim to win a medal in 2014 Asian Games and it is being funded by the Sports Ministry. We selected 30 core probables each in men’s and women’s sections in the Hyderabad Nationals last year,” Dahiya said.
“By the time they (AMSTA) wrote to us for trials we were about to start the national camp (from August 11) for the Super Series and entries already been sent to ISTAF (world federation) after clearance from the Sports Ministry. So there was no question of any trial,” he said.
“Moreover, we are not doing any trials as the government would not allow any player who does not report for national camp to be selected in the national team as the government is spending a big sum.”
Dahiya said that he even wrote to the Director General of Police of Manipur to release players for the national camp which began on August 11 at the Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium.
“Some top players are in the rolls of Manipur Police and I even wrote to the state DGP to at least release the Manipur Police players for the national camp (from August 11) so that they can be considered for the Indian team for the Super Series. They have not replied,” he said.