Hockey India (HI) has asserted that Belgium’s public expression of displeasure on Indians sweeping the FIH annual awards is nothing in need of “racial discrimination” and the world physique ought to provoke an intensive investigation into the matter.
In a strongly-worded letter to Worldwide Hockey Federation (FIH) CEO Thierry Weil, HI President Gyanendro Ningombam stated that Belgium and its gamers questioning the voting system was disrespectful in the direction of the Indian winners and demeaning their achievements.
“The general public statements of displeasure on the announcement of the Indian winners is very disrespectful and never within the spirit of sportsmanship and the game of hockey,” Ningombam wrote within the letter.
“The objections on behalf of Belgium Federation for 2021 winners must be rigorously examined by the FIH Governance Panel for what is taken into account on my own as a case of discrimination/racial discrimination.”
“Insult to Indian athletes and coaches”
Ningombam stated the lndian gamers and coaches have legitimately gained the polls generally throughout all classes however the achievement has been completely undermined by unfavourable feedback by fellow athletes and nationwide associations.
“… how humiliating, mentally traumatic and insulting it’s to the Indian athletes and coaches. Hockey India can not stand by and permit the efforts and achievements of Indian athletes and coaches to be questioned on this method…,” he stated.
“ls it honest that the laborious work and efforts of those athletes are being scrutinised and they’re being put by such harassment and psychological intimidation?” he requested.
India swept the FIH annual awards on October 6, claiming all the highest honours based mostly on a voting system which was lambasted as a “failure” by males’s Olympic champions Belgium, prompting the FIH to say that it might attempt to determine why some associations didn’t solid their poll.
5 Indian gamers and the pinnacle coaches of each the boys’s and ladies’s groups in Tokyo claimed the highest honours throughout totally different classes after fetching the utmost votes. The lads’s hockey crew had gained a bronze, its first in 41 years, within the Tokyo Olympics, whereas the ladies’s aspect had completed an unprecedented fourth within the showpiece.
The HI president requested Weil to request the Belgium federation to difficulty an official public apology for the “demeaning” feedback on the achievements of the lndian gamers and coaches on social media.
“If not, refer this matter to the FIH Governance Panel for thorough investigation into what’s discrimination/racial discrimination towards the lndian athletes and coaches.”
After Belgium questioned the voting system, the FIH had identified that the Indian award winners topped every of the voting teams that additionally concerned the nationwide associations and media.
It had additionally stated that solely 19 associations from the 42-strong European bloc solid their votes, in comparison with 29 out of 33 in Asia.
Votes from Nationwide Associations — represented by their respective captains and coaches — accounted for 50 per cent of the general end result, whereas followers and gamers (25 per cent) in addition to media (25 per cent) made the opposite half of the votes.
Nobody questioned the system in 2016: HI chief
“Hockey India made nice efforts to make sure good participation throughout all classes from our nation and now really feel publicly penalised for the full-hearted participation and assist of the Indian nominees.
“It’s disappointing that the Belgium Federation would like to query the voting system and the legitimacy of the lndian winners then really take accountability for not encouraging extra voting and supporting their athletes within the first place.
“The core of the matter is that these nationwide associations must first introspect to see their precise stage of participation and curiosity proper from the beginning as an alternative of now questioning the system as soon as outcomes are introduced not of their favour.”
He additionally identified that Belgium federation had secured winners after the 2016 Rio Olympics despite the fact that they completed second and gold medal successful Argentine crew didn’t get a single award.
“All awards in males (after 2016 Olympics) went to Belgium, then there was no questioning of the voting system,” he stated.
Ningombam additionally stated “it is shameful that European Hockey Federation is sitting quiet and never taking accountability for the shortage of activation and seriousness in voting by their Member Associations whereas additionally permitting their athletes and Member Associations undermine the outcomes and displaying disrespect to the winners”.
Weil had on Monday stated that the FIH would create a process drive to work on its international awards choice course of however asserted that the winners would not have been totally different even with out followers’ votes.