Football team not cleared, says IOA chief Narinder Batra

first_imgThe Indian Olympic Association has slammed the All India Football Federation for circulating wrong news that the men’s team has been cleared for the Asian Games. A fortnight ago, the AIFF officials had met the IOA office bearers in the Capital. At that time they were told to come back with projections on how they envisaged the team performing in Indonesia this August.”I am surprised to read reports in media that the football team has been cleared. No team has been cleared as of date and I wish the AIFF would tell us how the team can finish in the top eight. Only then can we think of clearing the team,” Narinder Batra, president, Indian Olympic Association today, told MAIL TODAY on Wednesday.From Thursday, the IOA will be dis-cussing prospects of various teams before the final clearance for the Asian Games. The deadline has been set for June 30, by which time, all national sports federations need to satisfy the IOA how their respective teams can perform in the Asiad. On Sunday, it was national football coach Stephen Constantine who had spoken to the media and said the team had been cleared. For its part, the AIFF, which met in the Capital on Wednesday to discuss the I-league, made no mention of the Asian Games. Batra also spoke about the mess created by the Equestrian Federation of India.”I was surprised to see a letter from the EFI they are going to hold a selection committee meeting again. They had informed us in written a fort-night ago no team was being sent as qualifying standards had not been met. They certainly have to provide us details on qualifying norms in the event of sending us team nominations again,” said Batra.advertisementOn Tuesday, IOA secretary general Rajeev Mehta had sent a stinker to the EFI, mentioning how they had dealt with the Asian Games selection in a very callous manner. The EFI officials have been running helter-skelter, not knowing how to deal with the selection mess. The bigger worry is how to reply to the IOA on its own constitution, elections and related issues. Batra also made it clear he will not tolerate national sports federations which are run in a haphazard manner. “We have taken up the EFI and will look at other errant sports federations. People need to realise the IOA is no longer in sleep mode,” he said.last_img

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