Sarita let off with stern warning after apology

Sarita let off with stern warning after apology

Sarita let off with stern warning after apology

Olympic Council of Asia president Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah on Saturday condemned Indian boxer Sarita Devi for returning the bronze medal during a dramatic ceremony that left everyone stunned.

“The main objective of the OCA in staging the Asian Games is to provide a fair platform for the athletes to showcase their skills,” Al-Sabah said during a press conference. Sarita was let off with a warning by the OCA after she apologised for her behaviour while the Indian Chef de Mission Adille Sumariwala also tendered an apology.

“Sometimes technical errors do happen in sports. Boxing has had a plenty of issues with officiating and the new rules were set to weed out the errors. I can understand her emotions from losing the match (to South Korea’s Park Jina in the women’s lightweight 57-60kg category). Everyone remembers Seoul Asian Games 1986 when a boxer broke out into tears (after being denied a win).

“As an athlete she needs to understand there are other athletes on the podium. They too have fought very hard to be there. You cannot kill their moment. While you had one eye on the technical officials, you should’ve had one eye on the others in the podium. There is always a medium to issue your protest and it could have been done that way.

“Athletes must follow the rules according to the AIBA and accept their decision. She deserves a better result, but then so do all the other athletes. I’m happy that she has apologised and we can put an end to this problem,” added the Kuwaiti.

OCA honorary life vice-president Wei Jizhong, sitting beside Al-Sabah, said they decided to let go Sarita with just a warning after she tendered an apology. “OCA received an apology letter from the Indian Chef de Mission (Sumariwala). We also received a letter from the national Olympic committee (IOA).

OCA then decided to give the athlete (Sarita) a strong warning as she apologised for her poor behaviour. We then understood that the country as a whole is not at fault for the misconduct of an athlete.”

Al Sabah also said they’ve received letters from five national Olympic committees regarding poor officiating and the OCA will take up the issue with AIBA.