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India at the Commonwealth Games - Determination has been the key
Well, during the 19th commonwealth games held in New Delhi in 2010, India had fetched a total of 101 medals and proudly stood second in the medals tally. Australia had topped the list. For the 20th Commonwealth Games being held in Glasgow, Scotland, a prestigious Indian news channel had correctly opined that given our capabilities, in case we are able to get hold of even 60 medals, it will be a satisfactory proposition.

Even now, when the games are in progress, if all our athletes do well in the remaining events, perhaps we might be able to reach the mark of 60 medals. Hopefully we will be attaining the 5th position overall this year. Although the supremacy of the organizers from Scotland and England still prevail, as they dropped quite a few events this year where India had done well.

A few examples include Shooting (pairs), Archery, Tennis and Greco-Roman Wrestling. This makes a huge difference to India's medal tally. India had won 34 medals in these events last time around, which was almost one third of their total tally! Indian authorities must pressurize them to include the games dropped earlier, so that fairness can be secured.

Even in the 51 medals we have won so far, there are 21 silver medals. Thus, it is clear that there is no dearth of talent in India. Our athletes are hard working and talented, but a little more push and confidence is required to boost their morale. For this IOA should chalk out a plan for hiring of a professional sports psychiatrist. Hopefully, this particular step will enhance our chances next time in Gold Coast, Australia.

Also, another vital reason, which has had its own impact is the cold and windy weather out there. Most of our athletes do not practice in the cold weather and this has certainly reduced their ability to perform well.

This time, most of the fans have noticed that it is more of the personal endurance and commitment of the individual players, which has paid off. Players especially belonging to rural background have participated in less fancied events like wrestling and boxing, thereby achieving glory for the nation. We must salute their spirit as they have been able to achieve only due to their dedication.

Despite a severe lack of infrastructure, no world class training facilities and equipment, missing environment for a talent hunt, no growth and promotion of sports in the country, our athletes have performed fairly good in the 20th Commonwealth Games.

Also, in the absence of a secure mechanism to provide suitable job opportunities, sportspersons fail to give their hundred per cent. Even the existing system of award and rewards is not free from controversies.

Another crucial factor, which has hampered the growth of less popular traditional, indigenous games such as Kabaddi is that events based on commercial interest and popularity charts like the IPL have remained the priority simply because of the reason that magnitude of money and glamour has scaled new records globally.

Also, the attitude of state towards the athletes until they achieve something worthwhile is there for all to see. A good example is there in the shape of Sukhen Dey, India's weightlifter who won gold at the Commonwealth Games recently. Despite all the odds, he was supported by his elder brother Soumen - a bus driver who did everything to make sure that his brother achieves glory for the country. 

It is pathetic that Dey had won gold in sub-junior level in 2005 but no federation or agency came out to support this talented boy until Pune based Army Sports Institute gave him a break in 2010. He had gone through a hell lot of difficulties including a failed dope test and ouster from the squad. But his extreme determination, commitment and passion has resulted in grabbing a gold.

Although now West Bengal Government has announced a reward of Rs.5 lakh, but this is precisely the message I intend convey through this write up. I want to appeal to the authorities and sports federations that something needs to be done immediately before it's too late.

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of merinews.com. In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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