Yashvir, Fernandez among six coaches named for Dronacharya

Yashvir, Fernandez among six coaches named for Dronacharya

Eight top coaches of the country, including London Olympic Games bronze medallist wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt's mentor Yashvir Singh, were today officially named for the prestigious Dronacharya Award.

Besides Yashvir, the other seven who were picked by the 15-member committee for the award were athletics coach Virender Poonia, Sunil Davas (kabbadi), Harinder Singh (hockey), Dr Satyapal (parathletics), India's boxing coach from Cuba B I Fernandez, and JS Bhatia (Athletics) and Bhawani Mukherjee (Table Tennis), who were selected for Life Time Achievement award.

"Ordinarily not more than 5 Dronacharya awards could be given in any calendar year. However, taking into consideration that this is the year of Olympic Games and Paralympic Games and there has been immense contribution of coaches in the improved performance of the sportspersons, the Government has decided to increase the number of Dronacharya Awards from 5 to 8 for the current year," the Sports Ministry said in a statement.

"Taking into account the outstanding contributions of Shri BI Fernandez, Cuban Boxing Coach in the performance of the Indian Boxers in the international sports events including mega events such as Olympic Games, Commonwealth Games and Asian Games, Dronacharya Award will also be conferred upon Shri BI Fernandez. He is the first foreign coach to receive Dronacharya Award," it added.

Among others, Virender is the husband-cum-coach of discus thrower Krishna Poonia who in 2010 became the first Indian woman individual gold medal winner in athletics in the Commonwealth Games. He was also Poonia's coach in the just-concluded London Olympics where she finished seventh.

Harinder was the coach of the Indian hockey team for some months after Spaniard Jose Brasa was sacked following India's poor showing in the 2010 Asian Games till Australian Michael Nobbs took charge in August 2011.

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