WFI vs Wrestlers | In the long-running battle for justice, the worst may be yet to come
The establishment of committees by the Ministry of Sports and the neglect of them have only led to stalemate and undermined the faith of the victims in the system and the faith of the common sports fan in the sports administrators.
It’s all starting to look like a giant wrestling carpet, with top Indian wrestlers in the red corner fighting against WFI and Brij Bhushan Singh in the blue corner. The authorities could stand in the place of the referee, we are in the place of the spectators. Three days have passed since then Bajrang Puniaand Vinesh Phogatalong with other wrestlers again protested at Jantar Mantar but somehow no progress seems to have been made.
Just 10 days ago, both wrestlers canceled their training trips in Europe demanding the sacking and arrest of the WFI president. Without knowing who’s right and who’s wrong, all of this adds up to losing valuable time in a year where wrestlers must focus on the Paris 2024 qualifiers. All of this can lead to our worst fears becoming reality. to win any medals in wrestling next year.
One exception in the wrestling world believes that it is time for all of this to end, as it will undoubtedly affect the wrestlers’ performance in the future. A well-informed source said that since all the charges are serious, there is no fire without fire.
“The situation has been settled and now the Supreme Court has intervened, so I don’t know what to say about it. But it is clear that all this will cause great stress and loss to the wrestlers, and in the future their performance will not be up to standard,” said a SportCafe source. “These are all high-profile players and certain medal contenders for the 2024 Olympics. I don’t know what the truth is, but why would a sane person protest for no reason? Why would they risk their careers? I am with the wrestlers in this competition.”
Aside from the allegations of harassment, there’s not much wrong with the Federation, and the source mentioned several of them, that ultimately lead to lower productivity. Perhaps the biggest of these is the full authority of the Federation, where players have no freedom as to how they want to practice.
“I saw it myself. I think the federation is a little strict about how they want to train the athletes when they are working full time. They do not have much freedom to choose their own ways, methods or venue of coaching. Since this is a qualifying year for the Olympics, the best should be allowed to train as they wish without being overlooked by the WFI. You can’t force feed these prize winners, it’s not the right way. You can’t expect medals from such players.
“There are other issues, but we have to wait for this one to be resolved first. It’s hard to function properly without someone to deal with on a daily basis. I can only pray that it will all be over soon.”
Since 2008, wrestling has been the most successful sport in India, winning at least medals in all editions. But as things stand right now, it will take a Herculean effort to get the house in order. There is a huge trust deficit between the administration and the leading players in the country, and even if justice is done in this case, they will be difficult to work with. All in all, the problems seem to only get worse from here.
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