Guwahati, Jan 22 (IANS) The Sports Authority of India (SAI) Director General Sandip Pradhan has said that the organisation is expecting good results from the country’s athletes in the 2024 and 2028 Olympic Games.
“The athletes selected in the Khelo India scheme after putting up good performances in the Khelo India Games, receive lodging, boarding and training free of charge in various accredited academies across the country,” said Pradhan.
“With the advent of the Khelo India scheme, we are expecting good results in 2024 and 2028 Olympics. We have declared 20 centres as national centre of excellence in India. The athletes, who perform well at the Khelo India Youth Games, will be given admission in the centres which have been declared as national centre of excellence,” he added.
Pradhan lauded the facilities utilized in the third edition of the Khelo India Youth Games here and was full of praise for the talented athletes, who took part in the tournament.
“All the facilities used for the tournament have been at the international level and the competition has achieved the objective for which the Khelo India Youth Games was conceived. The quality of talent in sports has gone up considerably. It’s great to see the rise of talent from rural areas. We have created a platform for all athletes to showcase their talent,” said Pradhan.
Through the Khelo India Games, SAI is trying to create international exposure in India for the upcoming athletes.
“Our objective is to take the Khelo India Youth Games as close as possible to the international multi-disciplinary competitions so that when our athletes go abroad for tournaments, they should not experience any wow factor. We have to create international exposure in India,” said Pradhan.
While the Khelo India Youth Games has unearthed many talented athletes, the Sports Ministry has planned to host another tournament for athletes of a higher age group.
“The government has decided to conduct the Khelo India University Games, which will begin on February 22 in Bhubaneswar, so our immediate challenge is to roll-out that tournament. Essentially, we want to host two tournaments – one at a youth level and the other at a university level,” said Pradhan.