Image source: PTI
File photo of Mirabai Chanu

Reflexes

  • Ministry of Sports approves appointment of Mauricio Avinash Pandu until the Paris Olympics
  • Avinash Pandu is the first person to be appointed to the position.
  • Pandu has more than two decades of coaching experience in South Africa and Indonesia.

The Ministry of Sports has given a great gift to weightlifters preparing for the Olympic Games in Paris. The Ministry approved the appointment of Avinash Pandu from Mauritius as High Performance Director (HPD) for Weightlifting until the Olympic Games in Paris. He is the first person to be appointed to this position in this sport. His appointment was recommended by the Sports Authority of India (SAI) Foreign Coaches Selection Committee along with officials from the Indian Weightlifting Federation (IWF).

According to a statement issued by SAI, his annual salary will be $54,000 (approximately Rs 40.50 lakh). The purpose of his appointment is to build a strong training structure in addition to improving the ability of the players. The 46-year-old from Mauritius, a resident of South Africa, has over two decades of coaching experience in South Africa and Indonesia. As an HPD, Pandu was instrumental in helping two Indonesian weightlifters win medals at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

IWF President Sahdev Yadav said his appointment would give the game a much-needed boost. He said: “Pandu has a lot of experience. It will promote the Junior Development Program at the SAI National Center of Excellence (NCOE) across the country.” On his appointment, Pandu told Cape Town that he hopes to take over as India’s first Weightlifting HPD. “I’m sure I’ll do my best,” he said. I will try to do my best in the youth and junior sections to help develop recognition and exposure of talent.”

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