Rathore happy with youngsters’ Asiad show

When it comes to the nation, we will never give up, says Sports Minister

September 08, 2018 09:30 pm | Updated 09:30 pm IST - NEW DELHI

 Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore. File

Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore. File

Union Sports Minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore rates the performance of the young medal winners as the gain from the recently-concluded 2018 Asian Games.

“I think the highlight of the Asian Games has been the emergence of young athletes. Thirty-one medallists were age 21 or below. And, that too in newly-introduced sports like kurash and sepak takraw,” he said in a chat with The Hindu .

For Rathore, a silver medallist in shooting at the Athens Olympics, it was a throwback to his times.

“Having the right attitude and seeing the larger picture is the first step to any success story. I have been through this grind. As Sports Minister the least I can do is enable them with a more conducive environment.

“When it comes to the nation, we will never give up, never say no, never feel defeated,” he stated.

“Look at the young athletes. They are not unnerved. There is a sense of belonging. A 16-year-old representing India in shooting and winning gold is absolutely fascinating.

“Each athlete who represented India has his own story of a unique challenge he would have overcome. Our performance can improve if we learn why we missed and take the right steps.”

Rathore added, “There is a dichotomy that you can either focus on elite athletes or take sports to the masses. In fact, both approaches are interwoven. Khelo India (KI) has been a true game-changer. We have decided to allocate ₹1,756 crore for sports development under the KI scheme.”

‘Celebrating medals’

On the approach to sports in his tenure, Rathore noted: “It’s about celebrating medals. The Prime Minister wanted to know who all had done their personal best. So it’s not just the medal. It’s about how you are performing. This attitude of nothing to fear has a cascading impact.”

On the menace of doping, he insisted: “There is a communication and awareness campaign going on. There is penalisation also. Organisers of sports events where such things tend to happen more have been told to be extremely watchful.”

Rathore said that coaches were being evaluated too.

“You cannot have great athletes without great coaches. We plan to train coaches at every level so that there is a steady progression linkage in the training that an athlete receives over his entire career — from playground to podium.”

Top News Today

Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.