NEW DELHI: India’s Olympic-bound rowers will be leaving for Tokyo from New Delhi a day earlier than the rest of the contingent. The Rowing Federation of India, who had informed IOA of their plan more than a month back, to get much-needed practice.
In fact, the team wanted to leave on July 14 but due to unavailability of direct flights to Japan, they had booked the next available flight on July 16. The rowers finished the last day of training at Pune on Thursday. “This will help our rowers to squeeze in an additional day of practice. Due to quarantine measures, we would have ended up getting only two days, now they will get three days. Also, at the time we had planned our departure, the charter Air India flight had not been booked,” was RFI’s response.
The athletes will have a couple of hours layover in Delhi before their flight to Japan. The first batch of athletes are due to leave on July 17 on board a Air India charter flight which leaves the national capital at 11 pm and reaches Tokyo early on July 18.
Paddlers reach early
Out of the four Tokyo-bound paddlers, three reached New Delhi on Thursday while A Sharath Kamal will reach on Friday morning. The group wanted to check their kits and make sure measurements are in order. The team will stay in a serviced apartment until July 17, where all of them have been allotted separate rooms. “We wanted to make sure there are no last-minute errors with regards to their kits and hence called them to Delhi in advance,” TTFI secretary Arun Banerjee added.
Meanwhile, the archers are set to leave ASI, Pune on July 17 and reach a few hours before the night flight. IOA has booked their accommodation within the airport campus and they will join the contingent later. “They can practice another day in Pune and take rest in Delhi for a few hours before their flight,” an AAI official added.