Mangaluru, Dec 31, 2014: Having decided not to represent another State, Incheon Asian Games Bronze winner in 400 m event M.R. Poovamma has said she hoped the Karnataka government would make available all the facilities required for its athletes.
In an informal chat with presspersons here on Monday, Mr. Poovamma retracted from her earlier statement of representing another State for various reasons, including non-availability of facilities and lesser cash prize to winners of national and international events. She hoped that her demand for a personal coach, nutrition expert, physiotherapist and physician would be met by the government to improve performance.
The least the government could do was to send promising athletes for training abroad, in institutes of international repute, Mr. Poovamma said. There were some special institutes in the United States and training for a couple of months there would help athletes improve their performance, she said.
In Mangaluru on a two-week leave from the Thiruvananthapuram training camp, Ms. Poovamma said she was preparing hard for the Rio Olympics 2016. While her best record in the 400 m event was 51.73 seconds, she is aiming to beat the international record of 48.06 seconds. Training in India should start at a very early age, in line with the West, to bring out the best of the talent, she said.
Regarding the facilities for athletes in Mangaluru, Ms. Poovamma said the recently laid synthetic track at Mangala Stadium was a good move. However, the track gets damaged by regular walkers and joggers. “They even disturb our practice sessions,” she lamented.
To a question, she said the Athletics Federation of India had planned an athletics league on the lines of IPL and Kabaddi leagues. But the dates were yet to be finalised, she said.
Courtesy: The Hindu