Executive member of the Indian Olympic Association, Amitabh Sharma, on Tuesday said the sports infrastructure raised by Goa for the 37th National Games was pretty much satisfactory and the IOA was very much looking forward to having the games in the State.
Sharma, who was accompanied by State Sports Minister Govind Gaude, said that according to the IOA, the State is fully charged up to host the games, but, however, it is still deep diving into the technical requirements and the small nitty gritty like sourcing equipment and tiding over other aspects will be taken care of within a month or two.
He said the IOA has been looking at venues in both North and South Goa, from Peddem to Margao. "In Ponda, we were planning to host weightlifting, but it might not be best suitable to have it there due to several factors. We will have other sports in Ponda and shift weightlifting to another suitable venue technically apt for the purpose," he disclosed.
When media persons asked Sharma whether there were any major concerns remaining, Sharma said the concerns were minor at certain venues and IOA has discussed these with the engineers of the SAG. The work done by the engineers so far has been commendable, he said and added, "We interacted with them over the last three days. There are areas requiring attention and they will be taken care of."
On the question of the number of games to be hosted, he said, "As of now 37 for sure, but certain games will be added. Our endeavour is to also promote domestic sports, so we are evaluating and there will be certain additions that will be disclosed later, he informed.
Sharma said some sports disciplines like velodrome for cycling format and shooting might have to be shifted out of the State. A decision in this regard will be taken soon, he added.
He cleared that only cycling velodrome-related cycling events will be shifted out of Goa and other aspects like road racing will be very much part of the games in the State.
"Creating a velodrome requires huge capital investment, so when the infra is available elsewhere it is wise to shift the events there," he mentioned.
He said as far as sailing is concerned, it will be part of the games and the IOA was in touch with the technical delegation of the yachting association. Dona Paula will be the venue for events related to sailing, he informed.
Answering a concern on whether any sports discipline will be dropped, Sharma answered in the negative and said, "There is no sports discipline or category that will be dropped. The games will be held in full format."
Sharma was part of the IOA delegation that was here on a three-day visit to review the preparations made by Goa for hosting the 37th National Games in October.