Commonwealth Games 2018: 'Saina Nehwal should not make personal demands on social media,' says Jwala Gutta
Indian badminton star Jwala Gutta expressed her disappointment at the fact that Saina Nehwal, one of the country's top women's singles shuttlers, had to take to social media, in order to get her father an accreditation for the Commonwealth Games Village in Gold Coast, Australia.
The Games, which are set to get underway with the Opening Ceremony on Wednesday, will see a number of former colonies of the British Empire come together for a grand multi-sport event.
Saina Nehwal, who is one of India's top medal hopes in badminton, stirred up controversy on Monday when she vented her frustration that her father, Dr Harvir Singh, was not given access (as an official) to the Commonwealth Games Village, despite promises from the Indian Olympic Association.
The 28-year-old shuttler was even said to have sent a letter, in which she threatened to pull out of the Commonwealth Games if her father's accreditation was not sorted out.
Jwala Gutta, who had won a gold and a silver at the 2010 Commonwealth Games, and a silver and a bronze at the 2014 CWG, believes that Nehwal should not have taken to the social media to make such demands.
"I have nothing against her father staying in the village. But this is a personal demand. Going onto social media with such personal demands is something that I don't agree with," Gutta said to Sportskeeda.
"I don't shy away from giving the credit, or accepting the fact that she is one of the best shuttlers from our country," she said. "She (Nehwal) has done a lot already for Indian badminton. But since she has done a lot, we also expect some kind of decorum from her on social media, because a lot of people look up to her.
"The social media should be used for debate on social causes or different issues. I speak about issues on women, on doubles (badminton). I don't think I've ever made any personal demands on social media," Gutta continued.
She further went on to state that back when she used to play in multisport events, she made arrangement for her family to stay in hotels and buy them tickets to watch her play.
"As athletes, we all want moral support from our families. When I used to go to the Games, we used to have day passes for my family to come and visit me inside the village," she said. "I used to plan this way in advance so that I could concentrate on my matches ahead of the tournaments."
Now, however, the matter has been resolved, and the Indian Olympic Association has also clarified its stance, saying that it wanted to keep all the athletes happy, in order for them to perform well at the Games.
While Dr Singh has been given the proper accreditation, the only thing that Indian sports enthusiasts can now hope for is that Nehwal gets the proper moral support that she was looking for, in order to bring home the medals.