The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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New gadgets, but on loan

Calcutta: With the national swimming championships scheduled for the city from September 17, the Bengal Amateur Swimming Association (BASA) will have some sophisticated gadgets, but only on loan.

The BASA secretary Ramanuj Mukherjee informed that for the first time an electronic touch pad will be organised at the Subash Sarobar swimming pool.

However, Mukherjee said it will have to be brought from Bangalore and will cost Rs 71,000. “A touch pad is being wasted in the SAI Centre in Talkotra, but in spite of repeated requests, there hasn’t been any positive response,” Mukherjee added.

The secretary further said that the association will get a new metaflex, 1m and 3m spring boards and a fulcrum with the tournament in mind.

“It will be a very expensive proposition, but we’re trying to do our best,” Mukherjee added.

The secretary added that efforts are on to rope in a sponsor, but that hasn’t bore fruit till now.

The Indian team for the Afro-Asian Games will be chosen on the basis of the performance in this meet.

The official informed that this will also be one of the main trials for the Olympic Games in Athens in 2004.

Mukherjee said that BASA is also trying to ensure dope test facilities for the nationals.

“We’re doing our bit, but ultimately it lies in the hands of Swimming Federation (SFI) of India and SAI. I hope they take the necessary measures.”

SFI has ensured that a swimmer is not allowed to participate in not more than five events in the tournament. The decision has been taken to make the field more competitive and stop a swimmer from running away with too many medals.

Coaches’ course

The BASA has also decided to host a clinic for the state coaches for the first time in November. Mukherjee said about 30 Bengal coaches will get tips from national coach Pradeep Kumar. Kumar is also the chief coach of the Karnataka state association.

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