Andhra boy takes part in North Zone archery competitionFebruary 16, 2022
It seems that the Indian sport has gone back to a scenario where domicile is not mandatory for national level competition. In a case similar to those from the days when Haryana’s wrestlers would often participate in the Nationals Championships representing Manipur and other North-Eastern states, a young archer from Andhra Pradesh took part in a north zone tournament that was held in Sonepat over the weekend.
Kunderu Venkatadri took part in the third Khelo India Archery Tournament held for the 10 teams in North Zone. Venkatadri stood first in the elimination round of the junior men’s compound event while representing the National Centre of Excellence (NCOE), Sonepat. He then joined hands with T Chikitha to finish top in the compound mixed team category. Further, he was part of the team, including Yashraj Dubey and Jai Singh, which topped the charts in the compound team competition.
Venkatadri, who has been at the NCOE centre of the Sports Authority of India (SAI) for the past few months, had already represented his native state in the National Ranking Archery Tournament (NRAT) in Hyderabad last month, finishing 20th.
Archery Association of India (AAI) treasurer Rajindra Tomar, who is also in charge of the North Zone tournament, told The Tribune that the zonal tournament was needed to give more competition to the next generation. However, he clarified that the players can be invited to take part in the zonal meets, but will have to represent their state teams only. “This was the third zonal meet. I am glad to inform you that the participation has reached roughly to a stage equal to our National Championships. Scores have improved as well,” Tomar said.
SAI, meanwhile, has washed its hands from the gaffe saying Venkatadri’s participation was allowed to give him competition and he was not awarded any medal.
“Archers who are part of the junior National archery camp and para archery camp underway at NCOE Sonepat are from all over India and have taken part in the league for the purpose of competition exposure only, but have not contended for a medal place,” SAI said. It added that competitions in other zones will be held in Kolkata, Manipur, Aurangabad in the coming months.