BENGALURU: Derecognation of Karate Association of India (KAI) by the World Karate Federation (WKF) has come as a huge setback for karatekas in the country.
The world body was displeased with the infighting in the KAI, which had also held 'flawed' elections last year.
Even Indian Olympic Association disaffiliated the karate body in January last year for violation of their constitutional guidelines.
The recognition means the players are unsure about their next move. Some of them want to talk to their personal coaches to know what lies ahead while some want to adopt a wait and watch policy. Most of the athletes came to know about the derecognition via a WhatsApp group message on Tuesday.
At a time when Covid-19 has meant no clarity about the upcoming competitions, the world body's action came as a double blow.
“The players are not at fault, but we have to suffer due to problems in the KAI. The motivation factor takes a big hit when such kind of things happen. Now, what is the use of practicing when one does not know what is going to happen in the near future?
Imagine a situation, where top players will not be able to represent the country in international competitions,” said one of the karatekas on the condition of anonymity.
A federation getting derecognised does not necessarily mean athletes cannot take part in international events. The only difference being that they will have to participate under the neutral flag. Some of the karatekas are hoping to compete in the Olympic qualification tournament if possible.
It is scheduled for next year, but the exact date and venue has not been finalised yet.
However, a few are hopeful that the derecognition might turn out to be a blessing in disguise.
“See, there might have been a lot of things, which have been going around in the federation politically, but we are not aware of it. Players' job is just to practice and improve,” said another karateka, who also did not
wish to be named.
“I know, this is a tough time for everyone, involved with the sport. It is also demotivating. But, we should also look at the positive aspect. Whatever has happened, it has happened for the good of karate in the country. Now (in the near future) hopefully, we can have a clean and a better federation. For a better future, some things might go wrong. You just have to go through this period hoping for a good future."