Olympics: Athletes disappoint the ‘Flying Sikh’

After the sports awards distribution on August 29, Milkha Singh criticised ace jumper Anju Bobby George for her dismal performance at the Beijing Olympics and demanded that action be taken against her, as she had let down the country..

THE LEGENDARY ’Flying Sikh’ Milkha Singh is disappointed with the below-par performance of the athletics team at the Beijing Olympics.

He was particularly critical of ace jumper Anju Bobby George for her flop show and suggested that strong action be taken against the star long-jumper.

Milkha lambasted Anju and other athletes in New Delhi after the distribution of national sports awards at the Rashtrapati Bhawan on Friday (August 29).

He bitterly remarked that he was very disappointed with Anju’s performance in Beijing. She had not prepared herself for the event and had let the entire country down.

It was Anju’s worst ever performance in Olympics.

She could not record even one valid jump - all three of her attempts ended in fouls. He said, "I think the Athletics Federation of India (AFI) should take action against her for such under-performance."

He was of the opinion that all the money spent on Anju and the athletes had gone down the drain.

The crores of rupees spent by the government on her did not result in any positive outcome and she should be made answerable for her poor performance.

It had saddened not only him but millions of Indians as well.

He questioned the worth of training that was provided abroad but could not help the athlete deliver.

Milkha, in fact, had a dig at the entire athletics contingent, for failing to match even their personal best.

He was candid when he said that he had not entertained great hopes of the athletics contingent but what tormented him most was that the contingent could not come close to even its personal best.

The disheartening show of Anju and others showed how ill-prepared they had been for the mega sporting event.

The Flying Sikh was, however, all praise for the medal winners.

He was impressed with India’s overall Olympic performance and sounded satisfied when he said, "I wanted to see India win a gold medal in my lifetime and Abhinav Bindra fulfilled that dream. Our boxers and wrestlers also performed really well." T

his year’s Arjuna Award winners were selected by a committee headed by Milkha Singh.

He said that the number of awardees could have been higher, but the standard of athletes was not all that good and so the committee decided to give away just 11 awards instead of the 15 that are usually announced.