Coronavirus | Keep athletes on vaccine priority list: AFI chief

Athletics Federation of India president Adille Sumariwalla said on Wednesday that the federation was working with the government to ensure athletes are high up in the priority list to receive a vaccine when it is ready.

“We have already discussed this with the government. If they need to go to the Olympics, we need to ensure our athletes should get it [the vaccine] in the first batch,” Sumariwalla said during a webinar jointly organised by IDBI Federal Life Insurance, Athletics Federation of India and FIT India.

Eyeing January start

The Olympian also added that athletics events in the country might resume only in January with intensive training set to begin in October.

“We have just chalked out our detailed calendar and we are hoping to see competitive action from January onwards.

“Due to the delay [in the start of the Olympics] we are confident of a much better show as our young athletes will be more mature and better prepared,” said Sumariwalla.

Bio-secure bubbles

National Badminton Coach P. Gopi Chand proposed multiple mini-leagues for top athletes within bio-secure bubbles to kickstart sporting activity.

“Sport across the world has started and we cannot be left behind. It may not be possible to hold the same kind of tournaments like in the past.

“We can look at a league in each sport among elite players by dividing them into groups as per their levels. We can create a bubble and ensure they don’t need to travel much,” Gopi Chand said.

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