Sports Ministry plans 4-year contract for new coaches, IOA president lauds the move

NEW DELHI: The sports ministry on Thursday extended the contracts of all foreign coaches employed with it till September 30 next year and said that future hiring — both Indian and foreign — will be done on a four-year cycle in sync with the Olympic Games to ensure continuity.
The four-year contracts to be given to new coaches will, however, be on the basis of recommendation from the respective National Sports Federations.
The extension for the current bunch of hired coaches has been done keeping in mind the postponement of the Olympics to next year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The contracts will be reviewed annually and extended on the basis of their overall performance, indicated by the achievement of the athletes under them in major international events.
“Coaches are the backbone of the sporting ecosystem of any country and ensuring the right coaching for our elite athletes is a vital step towards improving India’s chances in all major international tournaments, including the Olympics,” sports minister Kiren Rijiju said in a statement.
“This decision is part of India’s long-term roadmap for Olympic preparation for 2024 and 2028. I am confident our athletes will benefit from this,” he added.
Indian Olympic Association president Narinder Batra welcomed the decision and said it will help athletes in a big way, especially during a time when they have had to go on a forced break due to the coronavirus-forced lockdown.
“At a recent meeting with the sports minister, representatives of various NSFs had raised this issue and requested for longer contract periods for foreign coaches. The existing coaches know the athletes and will build them up,” Batra said.

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