(The Bridge is now on WhatsApp. Subscribe to stay connected to the Indian Sporting Ecosystem.
Click here & hit the SEND button.)
An updated version of this story can be found here.
With India gearing up to host the ISSF Shooting World Cup later this month, news now emerges that the Junior camp National coach Jaspal Rana has been dropped from the ongoing preparatory camp in the Nation’s capital. According to Mail Today, no effective reason has been provided for this exclusion. Rana has been credited with the boom in Indian shooting which has seen many youngsters perform significantly well in the Senior circuit. Among his wards are Manu Bhaker and Asian Games gold medalist Saurabh Chaudhary.
“It is sad. I have not even been informed that I was not needed at the camp,” Rana was quoted as saying by Mail Today. “Without trying to take the credit from the performance of shooters like Manu, Chinki and Saurabh, I can say I have nurtured them all along.”
“I am not upset just because I am not in the camp. But I wonder what will happen to the juniors who have been working under me,” he added.
“I wonder who will handle them now on. The juniors are at a stage where they still need a lot of care.”
As the road to Tokyo 2020 will essentially make up the most of this year, the National Rifle Association of India is still grappling to provide answers or a possible reason as to why this step was taken. According to the same Mail Today report, in an unrelated scenario, there has been a lot of in-fighting between national coaches at various levels which continued until the NRAI chief Raninder Singh stepped in.
The upcoming Shooting World Cup comes with quota places for Indian shooting for the Tokyo Olympics. The biggest advantage our shooters would have had was that it would be on home turf and in familiar conditions. This development surrounding Jaspal Rana seems to come at a very unfortunate time.
India have, so far, secured two quota places for the Olympics in Shooting.