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ALBA seeks proper selection trial for squad

Guwahati, Feb. 12: The Assam Lawn Bowling Association has moved the Bowling Federation of India to adopt a proper selection procedure to name the Indian squad for international events.

The association has received notifications for two different sets of players for the 9th Asian Bowls Championship to be held in Kuala Lumpur from April 6 to 10. It then wrote to the BFI, requesting a set procedure to select the national teams so that deserving players are not deprived of berths in the national squads.

“The sport itself is a new one in India and when states like Jharkhand and our’s are trying their best to develop it, there seems to be room for improvement at the national level. The selection of national squads, for instance, often appears to be arbitrary leading to disappointment and de-motivation. A section of players from our state, Meghalaya and Arunachal Pradesh have taken up the matter with us. We have requested the BFI to stipulate the criteria so that we can explain it to the players,” said ALBA president Durgadas Boro.

“We are happy that four of our players have been named in the squad for the Asian meet in Kuala Lumpur. But the arbitrary nature of the selection was apparent when we received two notifications naming the teams for the meet.

One of the Assam players, Mridul Bora, who was named in the men’s team in the first communication is replaced by another Assam player, Ruptu Gogoi, in the second list without any reason,” Boro, a senior executive body officebearer of the Indian Olympic Association, said.

The four players named in the squad are Gogoi in men’s team, Manu Kumari Pal in the women’s team and Nayanmoni Saikia and Tania Choudhury in the under-25 women’s team.

Pal was named in the second circular after Rupa Rani Tirkey of Jharkhand pulled out in view of her examinations.

The BFI had announced informally that it would hold a selection trial for the national squad.

However, the squad was apparently named on the basis of performance in the nationals, alleged Boro, former president of the Assam Olympic Association.