Principal Correspondent

HYDERABAD: B. Chetan Anand and Jwala Gutta have decided to pull out of the Elite camp being organised by the Badminton Association of India.

Both Jwala and Chetan informed The Hindu that they were virtually forced to take this decision because of the indifferent treatment meted out to them over the last few months.

Apparently, Jwala's grudge is that she along with her partner Shruthi Kurien, who won the National doubles for nine years, were ignored for this December's Doha Asian Games.

"We just can't understand the logic in this," she exclaimed.

However, Shruthi has not given any hint about pulling out of the Elite camp. The decision of Chetan and Jwala means that they will not be considered for selection for any official tournaments like the World championships or Commonwealth Games in future. "The BAI passed a resolution in Delhi last month in this regard. At the most we will only entertain them if there are any selection tournaments held for the above big events," said K.Ch. Punnaiah Choudhary, Joint Secretary of BAI.

Questioned about this risk, they appeared not too concerned and said: "We fail to see any reason even in splitting established doubles combinations like Diju being asked to pair with someone else other than his regular partner Jaseel P. Ismail."

Gopi's version

But chief National coach Pullela Gopi Chand made it absolutely clear that the selections are not done according to the whims and fancies of any individual. "It is the panel's decision to field only two women singles players Saina Nehwal and Trupti Murugunde for the Doha Asiad. Doubles is not in their game plan. Here again, the Government is not too keen even to send Trupti as they want only medal prospects in the Games," explained Gopi, who also recalled how the then Government was averse to sending him for the Busan Asian Games. Gopi and Aparna Popat were the sole representatives in the last Asian Games.

Even the men's squad was considered by virtue of its performance in the Thomas Cup where it stood fifth and had a reasonable chance of a medal in Doha, says Gopi.

On Nikhil Kanetkar, India's No. 2 men's player not figuring in the Asiad, Gopi said that the selection was done on the basis of IBF singles rankings.

Squad for Asian Games: Men: Chetan Anand, Anup Sridhar, Arvind Bhatt, P. Kashyap, Rupesh Kumar, V. Diju and J.B.S. Vidhyadhar.

Women: Saina Nehwal and Trupti Murgunde.

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