28 Indians qualify for Olympics : MS Gill

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{image-beijing games_24042008.jpg www.oneindia.com}New Delhi, Apr 24: A total of 28 sportspersons from seven disciplines, including nine from shooting, have qualified so far for the Beijing Olympic Games 2008, Minister of State for Youth Affairs and Sports M S Gill today said.

In a written reply in the Rajya Sabha, he said besides the nine shooters, five sportspersons each were from boxing and athletics. Four of those who qualified were competing in archery, two each in wrestling and table tennis while one had made it to the swimming event. "More players are likely to qualify," the Minister said, adding that the final number of sportspersons belonging to different disciplines will be known after all the qualifying rounds were over.

The Sports Authority of India (SAI) was assisting the National Sports Federation (NSF) in preparation of elite athletes through coaching camps, scientific and equipment support and the engagement of foreign coaches, he said.

In addition, the Government was giving full support to medal probables by way of need based personalised training and competition exposure.

To another query, Dr Gill denied that China, which is hosting the 2008 Olympics, had threatened not to send the Olympic torch in the absence of security.

The Minister asserted that the route for the Olympic torch was decided by the Indian Olympic Association.

UNI

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