Dec 31, 2006 1 Comment
Joshna Chinappa is fighting her own battle with the Squash and Racquet Federation of India (SRFI) and the other players are not involved, Asian Games bronze medallist Saurav Ghosal told TOI on Friday. “She has some issues with the SRFI, which are purely hers,” Ghosal, in the city for a short break, said. “The stand-off between Joshna and the SRFI has a long history. She is a very talented player and I hope she sorts out her problems soon,” he added. Joshna, the country’s No 1 woman squash player, has been at loggerheads with the SRFI, blaming the organisation for trying to ruin her career.
Ghosal, however, said that the SRFI has treated him quite well. “I have had no such problems as Joshna. In fact, the SRFI has helped me in my career.” Joshna is an aberration for SRFI, added Ghosal. “There are one or two such cases, but otherwise the SRFI has a huge role to play in shaping up players’ careers in the country.” Joshna has alleged that SRFI coach Cyrus Poncha has used her name for personal gains.
Ghosal, however, is willing to give due credit to SRFI for his Doha Games bronze medal, which was a landmark achievement for squash in India. “Apart from being a personal achievement, I think this medal will help squash in India. More money would come into the game now and we are hoping that the government will give squash a priority status.” That would mean more grants for SRFI and Ghosal is certain that the parent body will utilise this money to promote players. “More money would mean more exposure for us and standard will definitely improve.”
Ghosal, who left the city for Chennai because the infrastructure was much better in the southern metropolis, feels Kolkata hasn’t made much improvement since his departure. “I left for Chennai four years ago and am disappointed to say that the city still does not have a system in place to promote the game.” Ghosal feels he and another city boy Ramit Tandon have prospered mainly because of their talent rather than the system. “I can’t see any other player from Kolkata doing well on the national circuit.”
Ghosal, who is all set to take over from Ritwik Bhattacharya the mantle of being India’s top-ranked player, is currently world No 49. Bhattacharya is number 44. Ghosal has the talent to be placed much higher on the ladder and the Doha bronze is the just the boost he needed.