Government panel to rein in foreign trips

The steering committee on athletics for the Olympic Games has decided to limit the exposure trips abroad to only those athletes who have already qualified for the Games or are very likely to make the grade.

The committee, constituted by the sports ministry, took the decision after approving the foreign training of nine athletes along with their coaches under the National Sports Development Fund Scheme.

Under the scheme, long jumper Mayookha Johny, shot putter Om Prakash Singh, distance runners Preeja Sreedharan, Kavita Raut, Sudha Singh and O P Jaisha are already training abroad while discus thrower Vikas Gowda, whose name too is in the list, is based in the United States.

Discus thrower Harwant Kaur has also been added to the list, to undergo training in South Africa.

The distance runners as well as Harwant are yet to attain the qualification norm for the Olympic Games.

Krishna Poonia, who has achieved the norm in discus, has been visiting the United States in preparation for the Games.

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