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Former Indian sporting greats speak on Sushil-Narsingh Olympic battle

FEATURED COLUMNIST
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516   //    30 May 2016, 18:42 IST
Narsingh Yadav
After months of deliberation, the WFI gave the 74-kg berth in the wrestling contingent to Narsingh Yadav

Former Billiards World Champion and co-founder of the Olympic Gold Quest, Geet Sethi was at an OGQ event to talk about how this year’s athletes bound for the Olympics have been preparing for it. Geet, who’s been a former gold medallist at the Asian Games, had words of encouragement for athletes like PV Sindhu (badminton) and 22-year-old Shiv Thapa, the youngest Indian boxer to qualify for the Olympics. Thapa was 18 years old when he took part at the London Olympic games in 2012.

Speaking at the event, Geet Sethi also commented on the ongoing tussle between two of India’s premier wrestlers. “We have converted frustration and criticism into positivity. We don’t want to deal with negativity. Olympic Gold Quest is agnostic to what’s happening between them,” he said.

“How has the selection been done? It can be done better? Yes. There are so many problems that plague the whole world. I do not want to get into that. I don’t want to get into the negativity part. It’s not my purpose of my core existence her today. My purpose is to see that athletes prepare well. Everybody knows what’s happening. You guys have been highlighting it. There are unfortunate things that happen in the world”, he added.

Also read: Know your Indian Olympian: 10 things you need to know about wrestler Narsingh Yadav

“Every sport has its own rules and own selection criteria. I am not here as a judge trying to impose my viewpoint on how people should be selected. Perhaps I can do it for billiards and snooker,” Sethi concluded.

Badminton legend Prakash Padukone, who was also at the event, shied away from expressing his thoughts and had this to say, “We work with the federations and work with the government but we are not here to fight or give our thoughts on this. We don’t want to get into the administrative or selection process. I think Geet has made a valid point. We leave it to the federation on selection matters.”

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