Jwala Gutta lashes out at her exclusion from the Target Olympic Podium scheme
Indian shuttler Jwala Gutta has minced no words in expressing her disappointment over the omission of herself and fellow doubles player Ashwini Ponnappa from the list of athletes, who will be supported by the Target Olympic Podium(TOP) Scheme.
The Sports ministry declared the second list of athletes for the scheme, who will be supported financially by the government in their preparation for the 2016 Rio Olympics next year. The aim for the scheme is to identify young talent who could potentially win medals.
The new recommendations were made the TOP Identification Committee, which has BCCI secretary Anurag Thakur as its chairman and consists of the likes of former All England Open winner Pullela Gopichand, Olympic medalist Abhinav Bindra etc.
Gutta felt that Gopichand had a personal grudge against her and hence she wasn't included in the list.
“I had refrained from taking any names after the first list was announced. But now I have to really tell the world that there is only one person behind our exclusion from the TOPS list and that is Pullela Gopichand.
"Gopi has a personal grudge against me and that's why he doesn't want both of us. This is because I have always refused to massage his ego. My job is to perform for the country and not massage someone's ego,” Gutta told DNA.
She also questioned the selection of RMV Gurusaidutt, who is ranked 68th in the world, in the list of athletes
"Just because he is from Gopi academy, Gurusaidutt has been given a contract. How fair is this selection? A player like Gurusaidutt doesn't deserve to be there in the list. Sorry, but the whole situation has prompted me to take names." she added.
She also felt because of her, her doubles partner Ashwini Ponnappa was also suffering.
"Because of me, this poor girl is suffering. She is also bearing the burnt,” she said.
Ever since the news broke out, reactions have been pouring in support for the doubles pair.