CHENNAI:India’s compound archers, in a bid to repeat their medal-winning performances from the last Asian Games, will be undergoing a training camp with a foreign coach ahead of this year’s edition. But it will only be for 10 days!
The Sports Authority of India (SAI) has decided to engage the services of Italian Sergio Pagni after consultation with Archery Association of India under the TOP scheme. “The archers came to us with a list of requirements which we passed on the SAI. The compound archers suggested Pagni’s name because they had trained under him before. They have been in good form and we believe 10 days is sufficient for last-minute technical fine tuning,” AAI secretary general Anil Kamineni said. A sum of `4.04 lakh has been sanctioned for this.
Kamineni added there are no long-term plans as of now regarding the coach, as the main focus is on the Asian Games. The compound archers had gone to Italy in January for a training camp under the Italian.
India’s leading light Abhishek Verma felt 10 days is enough for now. “Pagni is a good mental trainer and it will benefit us ahead of the Games as we will be under pressure because of our standing in the world. But if a coach is appointed in the future — be it Indian or foreign — it will be better for a longer duration.”
Pagni will be attending the national camp at SAI Sonepat after the contingent comes back from the Archery World Cup Stage 4 in Berlin. The appointment has been made under the TOP scheme. The curious thing, however, is the fact that out of the eight compound archers, only four (Abhishek Verma, Rajat Chauhan, Trisha Deb and Jyothi Surekha Vennam) are a part of the scheme. “Just imagine that money meant for four will be spent on eight. This is a common theme. This practice should change in the future. Now, we are only focused on giving our best,” a member of the contingent added, on the condition of anonymity.
A total of `11.48 lakh has also been budgeted for the purchase of archery equipment for three compound archers Trisha, Rajat and Jyothi and one recurve archer Promila Daimary.
Men: Abhishek Verma, Aman Saini (both Delhi), Rajat Chauhan (Rajasthan), Sangamprit Bisla (Punjab); Women: Muskan Kiran (MP), Jyothi Surekha Vennam (AP), Trisha Deb (Bengal), Madhumita Kumari (Jharkhand).