Indian racewalkers stage walkout on Russian coach, decide to train under personal instructor
The athletes will compete at an International racewalk event on February 18 which will serve as a qualifying for the Commonwealth Games.
What's the story?
Four of India's top racewalkers have walked out from their training camp under Russian expert Alexander Artsybashev and moved back to Patiala to train under their personal coach.
In case you didn't know...
The Indian racewalkers were preparing for the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games to be held in April 2018 at a training camp in Bangalore under Artsybashev.
The heart of the matter
Sandeep Kumar, Chandan Singh, Jitender Singh and Devender Kumar are the four international racewalking athletes who have refused to train with Artsybashev and moved back to their personal coach.
Chief national coach Bahadur Singh said that the four athletes expressed their unhappiness with the training methods of Artsybashev in Bangalore and then the national camp was shifted to Patiala at the National Institute of Sports.
These athletes alleged that the coach ignored them and their training had suffered as a result of that. The four athletes, who hail from the Services, had complained to the Athletics Federation of India (AFI) about their displeasure under Artsybashev and have moved back to train with Services coach Surender Kumar.
The rest of the athletes from the camp will continue to train in Bangalore under Artsybashev. These include Women's 20km Asian Games medalist, Khushbir Kaur and Rio Olympians Manish Kumar Rawat, Gurmeet Singh and KT Irfan.
The athletes will compete at an International racewalk event which set to be held in New Delhi on February 18 and will serve as a qualifying event for the Commonwealth Games.
Athletes refusing to train with foreign experts has been a recurring occurrence in Indian sports and can prove detrimental to the medal prospects in the long run. The AFI should ensure that all athletes are taken care of properly by the coaches.