Aakanksha N Bhardwaj
Jalandhar, May 23
In a surprising incident, not even a single player turned for the football and wrestling trials held for the U-17 and U-18 categories in the residential sports wing. The trials commenced on Monday and concluded on Tuesday, with no players showing up for either of the sports on both days.
The coaches expressed their shock and disappointment at the lack of response. They reminisced about the times when securing a spot in the sports wing was highly competitive, with a large number of players vying for admission. “The competition used to be fierce, and being selected was considered a stroke of luck,” a coach said.
Jalandhar has been renowned for producing exceptional national and international players, including recipients of the prestigious Padma Shri and Arjuna awards. However, the participation in trials for the sports wings has dwindled over the years. Coaches attribute this decline to the students’ diminishing interest in sports, as more and more of them are opting to move abroad in pursuit of different aspirations.
The trend of low participation reflects the changing priorities of students, who now have a fixed goal of seeking opportunities abroad. The coaches also noted that other sports, such as boxing and gymnastics, witnessed minimal participation as well. Only 12 players turned up for boxing trials, while gymnastics saw the involvement of just 18 players. For boxing, four players attended on the first day and eight on the second day. As for gymnastics, 13 players participated on Wednesday, but only five showed up on Tuesday. Surprisingly, not a single player in the U-19 category came for the gymnastics trials on the final day.
District Sports Officer, Lovejit Singh said, “Trials for day scholar sports wing will start from Wednesday and we are hopeful that players will come and participate in the trials.”
The games included in the residential sports wing trials were athletics, volleyball, boxing, swimming, gymnastics, football, and wrestling.
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