SAI sanctions nationwide camp for Olympics shooters

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, October 8

The twice-postponed national camp for Indian shooters will start from October 15. The Sports Authority of India (SAI) has sanctioned a two- month long camp for the Olympics core group from October 15 to December 14.

Thirty-two shooters and 15 coaching staff members will be tested for coronavirus before being kept in seven-day quarantine here.

The National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) had sent a proposal to hold a camp of over 100 shooters, but SAI wanted it to keep the numbers low to maintain the Covid protocols. “It is imperative to have a camp because it is an integral part of the preparation for an event like the Olympics. The camp will be conducted following the SAI SOP,” SAI said in a statement.

The shooters will have regular interactions with the coaching staff through video-conferencing while in quarantine. Training will start on October 23. NRAI will not allow shooters who live in and around New Delhi to travel daily for training. They will insist all the campers stay in the hotel so that the athletes avoid exposure to the virus while travelling.

“We are taking it step by step so it is a camp for only Olympics group shooters. But I am happy that the camp has been sanctioned as our shooters were only training in their home ranges so far,” NRAI president Raninder Singh said.

Nationals soon

Meanwhile, NRAI has plans to hold this year’s national championships in New Delhi. The shotgun event is scheduled to be held in mid-November, while the rifle/pistol event is slated to start from December 5. NRAI has decided to hold competitions in one event at a time as traditionally a large number of shooters take part in the rifle and pistol championships. Over 7,000 took part in the national championships last year. NRAI has also decided to only entertain last year’s participants, as they could not hold any of the pre-national championships due to the pandemic.

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