New Delhi, Mar. 6:
The Sports Authority of India (SAI) Tuesday cleared Dipa Karmakar’s participation in the upcoming World Cups at Baku and Doha respectively but asked the gymnastics federation to conduct trials for men.
In a letter copied to the Gymanastic Federation of India (GFI), SAI approved Dipa and her personal coach Bisweswar Nandi’s participation at FIG World Cups in Baku and Doha respectively.
The GFI had registered Dipa for the back-to-back World Cups to be held from March 14-17 and March 20-23 at Azerbaijan and Qatar respectively but clearance was pending with the event beginning in less than two weeks time.
“On taking notice of the pendency of clearance of Gymnastics team for the World Cups, SAI acted swiftly and immediately approval for clearance of the contingent for the Olympic Qualification World Cup events,” Riyaz Bhati, vice-president of GFI said.
“Now the gymnasts are clear in their mind and can focus exclusively on their training and preparation.”
GFI had also sent the entries of Yogeshwar Singh and Ashish Kumar in the men’s artistic event in Doha.
However, SAI has decided to conduct a selection trial for men gymnasts for Doha World Cup where two gymnasts will be selected to compete on Floor and Vault events respectively. Apart from Ashish and Yogeshwar, there will be a number other gymnasts participating in the trials.
“The selection trial is likely to be conducted on March 11. We can make a request to the world body for replacement of gymnasts already registered,” Bhati said.
Bhati, who was selected by GFI to accompany the delegation at the two events, had earlier claimed that SAI Project Manager Rajinder Pathania was not clearing the team because he wanted to go for the two events.
SAI then had a meeting with Bhati on Tuesday before clearing the tours for the two Olympic qualifiers for the Tokyo Games.
Dipa, who finished fourth at the Rio Olympics, had clinched the bronze medal at World Cup at Cottbus, Germany last year.