51 players caught for age fraud

51 players caught for age fraud

Athletics Federation of India has started the process of biometric registration of athletes to tackle the age-fraud issue

Representative image. (DH Photo)

Rampant age-fudging continued unabated in athletics as 51 youngsters were found over-aged while another 169 fled to avoid verification test during last month’s National Inter-District Junior Meet in Tirupati, which was touted as one of the biggest talent hunt programmes in the world.

A record 4500 boys and girls in the under-14 and under-16 age groups from 494 districts competed in the National Inter-District Junior Athletics Meet (NIDJAM) held in Tirupati from November 24 to 26.

But on the basis of the age verification tests, which included dental examination and Tanner Whitehouse 3 (TW3) procedure, 51 were declared over-age by the Athletics Federation of India while 124 did not turn up at the AFI counter for medical tests after entering their names for the meet.

Another 65 youngsters did not come for the TW3 tests after they turned up for dental examination.

Rajasthan contributed the most number of over-age athletes -- 15 -- while Uttar Pradesh came second at 10.

The offending state units may face the heat from the AFI which had proposed in its Annual General Meeting in Agra earlier this year to suspend the secretary of the association if more than two athletes are found to be over-aged in a national event.

Now, the AFI will disqualify all the 240 athletes and the results will be changed accordingly.

The AFI also started the process of biometric registration of athletes to tackle the age-fraud issue.

Doping on rise globally

Doping cases in international sport rose 13 percent in 2017 against the year before, the annual report of the World Anti-Doping Agency said. The Montreal-based agency reported 1,804 Anti-Doping Rule Violations for 2017, a rise from 1,595 in 2016.

It said the cases in 2017 involved people from 114 nationalities, across 93 sports. Italy had the largest number of infractions, at 171, followed by France at 128 and the United States with 103.

Brazil had 84 and Russia 82, said the report. The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) on December 10 banned Russia from major global events -- including the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and the 2022 World Cup in Qatar -- for four years.