KOCHI: The Olympics are the biggest sporting spectacle in the world held every four years. However, the Kerala State Olympic Association has localised it to form the Kerala Olympic Games. The first Ernakulam District Olympic Games is presently under way across the city in as many as 24 sporting disciplines.
The novel concept has been welcomed by sportspersons as they feel such tournaments provide them more opportunities. “If you see the regular sports calendar, there is just one cycle of tournaments every year. For the average sportsperson, beyond the national tournaments or national games, there is very little to do. At a time when athletes don’t know when the national games or inter-university games will be held next, such tournaments will help a great deal,” said Ernakulam based shooter Ashuthosh Kamath.
Ashuthosh, a shooter, won a host of medals at the Ernakulam District Olympic Games including gold in the 10m air pistol men’s event alongside Naveen PR and Shivashankar Raghu. He also bagged bronze in the 10m air pistol men’s event. “The national games was supposed to be held in 2020 but now we don’t know when it will be conducted. More events will help,” added Ashutosh. According to the officials, despite the financial burden it incurs, the association is hoping to use the games as a platform to nurture the talent in the state.