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Commonwealth Games 2018: Saina Nehwal frustrated over father being denied access to CWG village

1.98K   //    02 Apr 2018, 20:57 IST

Saina Nehwal and her father Harvir Singh
Saina Nehwal and her father Harvir Singh

What's the story?

The Commonwealth Games will begin shortly and the Indian contingent is in its last legs of preparation before the tournament gets underway. But as usual, it isn't without its fair share of controversy.

Olympic medalist and national icon Saina Nehwal has expressed her frustration after she found out that her father's name was cut from the list of officials cleared to travel with the team to the Gold Coast. Despite having borne their own expense, Nehwal's father Harvir Singh has been denied access to watch her daughter play and even meet her as she prepares to mount India's medal challenge in Badminton.

In case you didn't know...

The names of Nehwal's father and PV Sindhu's parents were included in the initial list of officials cleared by the Sports Ministry to travel to Australia on no cost of the government. This came after pressure from the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) to include parents of the athletes to accompany their family members.

The heart of the matter

Saina Nehwal's concerns are legitimate as it was earlier believed that the parents would be accompanying the athletes to the Gold Coast even though they were not given any particular designation by the Sports Ministry in the list of athletes and officials making the trip down under.

Nehwal's father has been regularly seen at her daughter's major matches and if he isn't allowed access to see her play, it could lead to an unnecessary clash between management and athletes.

What's next?

There is no word yet from PV Sindhu but it is likely that she too may face a similar fate as her parents were also among those initially listed as officials travelling to the Commonwealth Games.

Author's take

It is quite unfortunate that these minor issues continue to plague Indian sports even at the highest level today. For the sake of athlete morale, one can only hope that the problem is sorted out soon enough.

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