The country’s jumpers are hitting a high like never before. There is long jumper M. Sreeshankar, the current junior world leader, and then there is Arpinder Singh, who ended a 48-year wait to win the men’s triple jump gold at the recent Asian Games in Jakarta.
But there is turmoil in the National camp in Thiruvananthapuram and that has now forced National jumps coach Bedros Bedrosian to put in his papers.
“I’ve sent my resignation letter to the federation, sent it about a week ago, but nobody has told me anything. I’m going to Muscat next month to join my wife and I will take three months rest; if they want me to come back, I will come back,” the Romanian told Sportstar from Thiruvananthapuram on Tuesday.
“I’m very happy with the Athletics Federation of India but at the moment, I’m very tired. After all that has happened in the last few months, I want to rest my mind. I’m planning to leave on November 21. I will decide what to do next, after February.”
One can understand Bedrosian’s predicament. Just weeks after the Asian Games, Arpinder opted to leave Thiruvananthapuram and train in Patiala and the AFI is now searching for a personal foreign coach for him; Neena, the Asiad women’s long jump silver medallist, has been telling the world that her husband Pinto Mathew, a former National hurdles champion, had trained her for two months prior to Jakarta. So, life in Thiruvananthapuram was never easy for the Romanian.
A few days ago, the AFI decided to shift the national jumps camp from Thiruvananthapuram to Palakkad so that Bedrosian could focus on 19-year-old Sreeshankar, the new National record holder, but the youngster is keen on training with his father S. Murali, a former triple jump international.
“I cannot go to Palakkad. Since Sreeshankar is training under his dad, why should I go there? Just to look at him? I don’t feel comfortable about it,” said Bedrosian.
“At the moment, I have nobody for the World Championships (in Doha in Sept-Oct 2019) so I thought of taking a break. If I’m coming back, may be I will be training only juniors.”
‘Not getting results’
With that being the situation, Bedrosian was hoping to coach Nayana James and he feels that the Kerala long jumper is capable of doing seven metres one day but the Asian Championships bronze medallist confirmed that she would not be training under the Romanian.
“I will not be training under Bedros. I’ve not been getting results, so I feel I need a change,” said Nayana, who has not been included in the national campers list.
Meanwhile, AFI Secretary C. K. Valson said the federation would try to change Bedrosian’s mind. “Yes, Bedros has submitted his resignation…the AFI has not accepted it, we are negotiating with him,” said Valson. “At this point of time, we cannot give him a break because we have the Asians in April. And it is also difficult for us to get coaches now.”