Parents of ace swimmer cry foul over selection for national meet

Parents of ace swimmer cry foul over selection for national meet

Submitted by Editor on Sat, 2016-06-25 16:00 Bengaluru: Parents of a Class 10 student have accused the Karnataka Swimming Association of unfair behavior after their son was overlooked in favour of another boy whose selection for the national swim meet reportedly was done in a non-transparent and dubious manner.Siddarth Rai, class 10 student of Bishop Cottons Boys High School, stood second in the state level 50 mt freestyle swimming (timing 26.99 secs) and 100 mt freestyle swimming (timing 58.26 secs) and fourth  in the state-level aquatics championship meet conducted by the Karnataka Swimming Association [R] Bengaluru and qualified for Junior National Level  Karnataka Relay team.As the nationals are scheduled to be held from 4th July, Siddarth had been undergoing extensive training for the nationals. So it came as a shock to Siddarth when he was informed last Thursday by the KSA that he had not made the list for the nationals. KSA officials said they had selected another boy, who had been sick and had not participated in the state- level qualifying competition, in his place.Siddarth’s grandmother and senior Kannada writer Usha Rai and father Dr. Subhash Rai were informed that a trial was held separately for the boy, who had missed the qualifying due to dengue fever, in which he had got selected.But the parents argue that there was no any video evidence of the trial and accused the KSA of acting in a non-transparent manner. When Dr. Rai asked KSA, he was shown a piece of paper where the timings lesser than siddarth rai by few fractions of seconds. KSA also justified their selection by citing bye-laws.“My biggest concern is that giving a time trial alone is not equivalent to competing under pressure in a meet. Just doesn’t seem fair to me to knock out someone who legitimately qualified in a fair competition based off a solo time trial! All the advantages goes to a sick swimmer here. What kind of manipulative rules are these? How can timings taken when swimming alone in a calm atmosphere considered without audience?’’ wrote Dr. Subhash Rai recently in a FB post.Usha Rai said that Siddarth had won the gold medal in last year’s nationals with the Karnataka relay team. “He missed the international relay team by .04 seconds. It happened in front of our eyes and so no bad feeling or misunderstanding,” she saidSiddarth had recently participated in the south-zone swimming championship meet in Udupi and was awarded medals in 50 freestyle, 100 freestyle, 200 freestyle and 2 relays besides he is a deep sea diver having finished 100 dives. Author:Mamatha Deva is a freelancer and past president of Inner Wheel Club, Sullia, Dakshina Kannada