Cycling Association trial runs into rough weather

Greater Kashmir

Top cyclist barred from participation

Srinagar, Oct 9: In violation of J&K State Sports Council (JKSSC) rules, J&K Cycling Association (JKCA) on Tuesday selected team for national event leaving out all top riders of the State.
 The JKCA had allegedly banned top cyclists from participating in the trial after the players had participated in recently held Tour de Kashmir cycling event.
 In the tour event Kashmiri cyclists out performed national level cyclists and earned laurels for the State.
 Instead of encouraging the cyclists, JKCA barred around 40 top riders of State from competing in the trials held on Tuesday at MA Stadium Jammu for national championship.
 In the trials, JKCA selected cyclists leaving out top riders who were going to win cycling events.
 Irked by the “discrimination”, players gave a representation to Secretary JKSSC, Duleep Thussu, who immediately issued directions to JKCA for not conducting trials without top 40 riders.
 However, the JKCA defied the JKSSC directions and went ahead with trials at MA Stadium Jammu on Tuesday leaving out around 40 top riders.
 According JKSSC rules, the teams that go for national event without screening of JKSSC are invalid and their certificates would not be entertained. In that perspective the JKCA is not only playing with careers of these ’barred’ cyclists but also with the careers of those cyclists who have been included in team.
 In the three page representation to Secretary, JKSSC, players have complained that, the Jammu based, JKCA always discriminate and harass Kashmiri cyclists.
 “It is known fact that cycling talent is based in Kashmir province rather than Jammu. Recently we participated in Tour-de-Kashmir cycling event organised by J&K Sport’s Development Association in collaboration with JK Tourism and TAAK. In the event Valley based riders gave tough competition to national level riders with top honours bagged by us,” a letter reads.
 “From the time we stepped in for Tour de Kashmir we are being continuously harassed by cycling Association led by its Joint Secretary, Kashmir who time and again threaten us with life ban. We are cyclist and our job is to play. We don’t know any politics and took part only in Tourism promotional cycling event. Which we think is no crime. We have been participating in Sadhbhawana and JK Police event for which they never raised any objection. We don’t know why they are raising objection this time,” letter further reads.
 The Cyclists have alleged that to bar top players from participating in trials is to push some blue eyed players in the team who in their presence stay no chance to get place.
 “It seems deliberate attempt on part of Association to push in blue eyed and Jammu players in the national squad to represent State in the National event. They are deliberately conducting trials in Jammu rather than Kashmir province knowing that most of the talented Kashmiri cyclist can’t afford travel to Jammu. We don’t understand why trials are being held in Jammu rather than Kashmir as Darbar Move office is still in Kashmir. At the time of each national event we are being discriminated by being forced to carry Jammu province players along with us despite they failing in trials,” letter reads.
 “From time to time, Association people based in Jammu have been harassing us through their puppets in Kashmir province. At the time of national they demand money from players for selection and also on pretext of various donation terms,” letter further said.
 The cyclist have appealed JKSSC Secretary, Duleep Thussu to step into the matter as the association has even defied his orders.
 “When we went to secretary sports council with our plea, he immediately issued orders to JKCA, directing it to stop trials and allow all players to be part of it. Howvwer, JKCA went ahead with trials selecting most of the unknown players who in open trials doesn’t stand any chance,” a delegation of players told Greater Kashmir.
 “We are not against anyone and just want open trials in front JKSSC officials in which all players should get equal chance to prove their talent,” they added.
 When contacted, JKSSC, Sports Officer, Jammu said, “The trials have been held without our consent. They can hold trials but we are not part of it. We are looking into the matter and will not allow injustice against any player”.