Archery Association of India secretary Maha Singh alleged on Thursday that the reason behind coach fiasco for the upcoming World Cup stage is interference by the previous dispensation.
The AAI had picked Kailash and Ved Kumar as compound coaches but as it has turned out no coach will accompany the archers for the tournament, beginning on Monday.
Kailash’s name had to be omitted after archer Monali Jadhav’s personal coach Chandrakant Ilag shot off a letter to Sports Authority of India Director General, claiming discrepancy in the coach selection.
Consequently, the sports ministry approved the name of Titomas Sharma.
But Sharma in all likelihood will not be able to join the side as the Chinese Embassy is closed for Labour Day holidays till Saturday and will only open on Monday when the tournament begins.
Ved Kumar will miss the flight as his passport renewal took “longer than expected”.
With no permanent coach in archery, the AAI follows the norm to send personal coaches of the players who topped in the trials. But this time the AAI picked Ved Kumar and Kailash as compound coaches based on their individual performances as it led to protest from archer Monali’s coach Ilag.
“In the history of archery, this has not happened. There’s a lot of interference from the previous group,” AAI secretary Maha Singh told, pointing fingers at the Vijay Kumar Malhotra-led faction.
On the alleged wrong selection of coaches, Singh said the AAI gave Kailash a chance based on his good track record.
“He was one of the toppers in a technical seminar for the compound coaches in the USA. We thought of giving an opportunity to an upcoming coach. What’s wrong in that. He has got three Services players. We believe in giving everyone a fair chance. They are Services coaches and maintain discipline that’s the main reason.
“Can you believe the team is going without any coach now? Chinese Embassy closed for five days. Nobody is going now. Kailash’s name was struck off at the last minute and Titomas was included,” he rued.
Singh pointed out that Titomas Sharma has not attended the camp for even a single day.
“They are full of lies. Their main objective is to create a hurdle at the last moment so that we end up on a losing note.”
Asked about Ved Kumar’s passport lapse, he said they were expecting it to be sorted.
When contacted, Ved Kumar said, “I had submitted my application more than two weeks back but as there was a change in my address, it took longer than usual.”
In the women’s compound team, there will be no stand-by after dropping the dope-tainted Anita Kumari, who returned a positive result for propranolol beta blocker, during the Khelo India Youth Games in Pune during January.
Earlier last month the Indian archers failed to compete in the season-opening stage one of the World Cup in Medellin following a “poor planning” that led to a blame game.
“We had submitted applications two and half months in advance and had the Visa approval. But the tickets sanction [from the ministry] came only two days in advance. It was a deliberate ploy to stall our trip,” Singh claimed.
It was too late then for main side to be sent for the stage two of the World Cup as the sanction had already been made for the second-string side.
The first team will now have just one International meet - stage three World Cup in Antalya from May 20-26 - before the next month’s World Championship in the Netherlands. It will offer quota places for the Tokyo Olympics 2020.
To make up for the loss, the AAI now has planned to send the team to the Netherlands 10 days in advance and acclimatise to the conditions.
“We have booked a ground for them. Hope they would make up for the losses,” Singh said.
Recurve: Men: Jagdish Chaudhary, Vakil Raj Dindor, Sukhchain Singh and Chaman Singh; Women: Preeti, Sakshi Shitole, Promila Daimary and Ankita Bhakat.
Compound: Men: Sangampreet Singh Bisla, Praveen Kumar, Gurwinder Singh and Lovejot Singh; Women: Monali Jadhav, Praveena and Priya Gurjar.