Medallist attacks India officials

India’s Olympic champion shooter Abhinav Bindra has hit out at the nation’s sports coaches and officials, saying they “know nothing” about sport.

India won their best ever haul, a gold and two bronze medals, in Beijing. But Bindra, who won gold in the 10m air rifle event, said there was “no magic solution” to make the underperforming nation a sporting power.

“If we want to get to double digits, we need to target 2016 and start working from today,” he said.

But the respective federations have no vision and I don’t see that changing. I wish I had a magic solution but unfortunately, I don’t. The IOA has to play a role in building athletes. It does nothing.”

I hadn’t realized the Olympic bureaucracy in India was so stodgy. It takes a good deal of courage to speak out – even as a winning athlete. Though this certainly is the best time to do so.

Kudos to Bindra for having the courage of his convictions. I hope a productive dialogue follows.

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