CWG: National women’s coach Bhaskar Bhatt gives up room in Games Village for Lovlina’s personal coach

Bhatt has checked into a hotel nearby. Gurung has moved into Bhatt’s room in the Village.

BY | Wednesday, 27 July, 2022

Birmingham: Indian women’s boxing team head coach Bhaskar Bhatt has moved out of his room at the Commonwealth Games Village here to accommodate Olympic bronze medallist Lovlina Borgohain’s personal coach Sandhya Gurung.

Bhatt has checked into a hotel nearby. Gurung has moved into Bhatt’s room in the Village.

“I have moved to a hotel which is a 10-minute walk from the Village,” Bhatt told PTI.

“I volunteered to do it (give his room to Gurung) as it’s all ‘ghar ka mamla’ and it’s best to sort out such things amongst ourselves.”

Bhatt, who took over the senior women’s head coach’s job last year, still has access to all the venues and the Village. The only change being that he won’t be able to stay at the Village at night.

“I have all the required access, so it’s not a problem for me,” Bhatt said.

Under Bhatt, the Indian women’s team returned with three medals, including a gold, at the World Championship in May.

On Monday, Tokyo Olympic bronze medallist Lovlina had claimed that her preparation was getting affected due to the “continuous harassment” of her coaches.

Gurung was added to the Indian contingent just days before the Games were to begin, which resulted in a delay in her accreditation.

On her arrival here on Sunday, she was not allowed to enter the Village as she did not have an accreditation, triggering a controversy. She was checked in to hotel where the extra officials were staying.

In a long social media post on Monday, Lovlina said she was feeling “mentally harassed” as it was a struggle to get her coaches added to the squad.

In its defence, the Boxing Federation of India (BFI) said that as per rules only 33 per cent of the playing contingent is allowed as support staff.

The Indian boxing contingent has 12 playing members (8 men and 4 women) and as per rules, the number of support staff will be four, which includes travelling coaches.

The quota was, however, increased to eight with the help of the IOA and Gurung received her accreditation on Tuesday.

Before taking over the charge of the senior side, Bhatt, who hails from Uttarakhand, worked with the youth team since 2017 and was an assistant coach in the senior women’s camp from 2005 to 2012.



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