Two judokas, one coach called back from exposure trip in Spain after "brawl" with women athletes
A national coach, attached to SAI, claimed that one judoka was involved in a "brawl with a women group and later one female was found inside his hotel room".
Two Indian judokas, including a former junior Asian Championships medallist, and their coach were on Monday called back from an exposure trip in Spain after it came to light that they were involved in an unsavoury and "severe incident" that involved women athletes from the host country.
A national coach, attached to the Sports Authority of India (SAI), claimed that one judoka was involved in a "brawl with a women group and later one female was found inside his hotel room".
It could not be ascertained whether the women athletes were also judo players.
"As a precautionary measure, the judoka, his roommate and their coach all have been called back to India. It appeared to be a brawl with the group of women and later one of them was found with the Indian judoka in his hotel room," the coach told PTI.
"The other judoka was not involved in the incident but he was a roommate of the athlete involved. The federation does not want to take any chances so they have asked for their return along with their coach."
The coach added that no police complaint was filed against the Indians.
The Judo Federation of India, which is run by administrator Justice Pankaj Naqvi, in a statement confirmed that there has been "some severe incident", though it did not specify whether it was a brawl or something else.
"We have received a message from the Indian judo team in Spain. Some severe incident took place, therefore JFI is calling back the sports persons involved in this matter to India," it read.
"I've got only ex parte allegations and I will not comment anything on it," Justice Naqvi told PTI.
A 30-member Indian contingent, including Birmingham Commonwealth Games-bound judokas, is currently at Alicante, Benidorm in Spain. It is their first exposure trip after the COVID-19 pandemic. They participated in the Madrid European Open and will be part of the European international training camp.
The incident has come to light, days after a female cyclist had complained of sexual harassment by the national coach during a training trip in Slovenia. The entire Indian contingent was called back. A female sailor had also claimed that her coach made her uncomfortable during a training trip abroad.