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Commonwealth Games 2018: Indian women athletes to shun saree, wear trousers and blazer at opening ceremony

Modified 20 Dec 2019, 15:00 IST

Indian women athletes
Indian women athletes used to wear saree and blazer in the opening ceremonies of mega events

What’s the story?

Indian Olympic Association (IOA) has decided that the women athletes of the nation won’t be wearing the combination of saree and blazer at the opening ceremony of the upcoming Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast.

"In the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, the female athletes would be wearing blazers and trousers," said IOA Secretariat in a release.

This is a departure from the Indo-western combination of attire which used to be donned by the women athletes during the opening ceremonies of multinational events in the past.

In case you didn’t know...

Earlier, the female athletes of the country used to drape themselves in a saree and put on a blazer over it for the opening ceremonies of major events like Commonwealth Games, Asian Games and Olympics.

The heart of the matter

IOA decided to maintain a uniform dress code for the entire Indian contingent for the upcoming Commonwealth Games. Thus the women athletes, like their male counterparts, will be wearing navy blue India blazers and trousers.

The IOA decided to do away with the saree-blazer combination because at times it used to become inconvenient for the athletes to remain draped in a saree for the entire stretch of the opening ceremonies which usually carries on for a long period of time.

Women athletes also weren’t too keen to carry on with the old combination and the IOA was quick to address the issue.

What’s next?

India will be sending a contingent of 225 athletes to participate in the upcoming Commonwealth Games, which will be held from April 4 to April 15 in Australia.

Author’s take

Indian shuttler Jwala Gutta in 2016 Rio Olympics had her blazer in her hand during the 2016 Rio Olympics. Sania Mirza and few other athletes were without the blazer at the 2012 London Olympics as well. Tennis player Sunitha Rao was in her tracks at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.


IOA has taken the right step as an athlete needs to be comfortable in the attire which he or she is wearing during the opening ceremonies of mega-events like these.

Published 20 Feb 2018, 16:45 IST
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