More drama for Indian Kabaddi as national teams fail to turn up for 'selection trials'
Once considered invincibles, the mighty Indian Men's Kabaddi team faced a historic 18-27 loss to Iran in the semifinal match at the 2018 Asian Games, while the women's team had to settle for silver after a defeat to Iran in the final.
The Amateur Kabaddi Federation of India (AKFI) had received a lot of flak post this and there were many fingers pointed at the selection procedure as the Indian team had been winning the gold at Asiad since 1990 and had 7 yellow metals in their kitty. The Indian Kabaddi team was also high on confidence and form as proven by winning the Kabaddi Masters in Dubai in emphatic fashion. The Asiad was a shocker and it was expected that many questions will be asked and interrogations made after the results at the multi-sports extravaganza.
Mahipal Singh, a former Indian international kabaddi player, had gone to the High Court alleging bribery in the selection process. A decision was reached wherein the team selected for the Asiad was to play the unpicked team of players with the match being monitored by High Court Justice S P Garg and Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports (MYAS) with officials of New Kabaddi Federation of India forming the challenger teams. The matches were to be played on 15th September but few would have expected that there would be more drama that would unfold.
There was a complete misinterpretation of the entire situation. Both the challenging federations, AKFI and NKFI, were present at the trials. However, no one had clarity on the purpose of conducting them.
NKFI had conducted their own trials in Bengaluru in August to build teams that they thought would challenge the national Men's and Women's Kabaddi teams in the matches, which, in reality, were never scheduled.
The Delhi High Court order clause 9 (i) states: "The Amateur Kabaddi Federation of India -- respondent no. 4 shall conduct a selection process which shall commence from 15th September, 2018 at 11 am."
It wasn't mentioned anywhere in the clause that the national teams are required to take part and the order had been misinterpreted by NKFI. What followed was an embarrassing situation for the players (of the teams formed by NKFI) who thought they had their chance to prove their mettle and get into the limelight by playing matches against the current national teams.
Eventually, open trials were conducted by the AKFI in presence of Justice SP Garg. However, what is most baffling and may even seem funny to many is that no one present there knew the exact purpose of conducting them.
What do you think will happen next to decide the fate of Indian Kabaddi and how will the mystery unfold? Do share your opinion in the comments section below.