London Olympics gives fresh impetus to sports in northeast

Kohima/ Guwahati/ Imphal, Sept 24 (ANI): The London Olympics, the best ever for India, has done more god to country than medals. It has fostered a culture of sports in the northeast, as ten sportspersons from the region represented the country in the coveted event.

The region is now not only known for insurgency and conflicts, but is considered a powerhouse for sports that can produce legends like D.R. Talimaran and M.C. Mary Kom.

The youngsters are keen to take up sports as a career and represent the nation like Marykom, Shiva Thapa and Laishram Devendro at various events

Traditionally known for their soccer skills, youth in the region are also showing keen interest in archery, shooting, tennis and gymnastics.

Speaking to reporters here, Shekrovolu Swuro, an Olympic archer hailing from Nagaland said, "The northeastern region is doing well in the field of sports. If we continue to give more attention and importance to sports, it can do much better in the future."

A seminar focussing on the need to improve training facilities in the northeastern region was recently held in Imphal, in which both government officials and sportspersons shared the stage.

Important issues like the need for international coaches, better equipment, jobs and other facilities were discussed in the event.

Sportspersons who participated in the London Olympics were felicitated on the sidelines of the seminar.

Speaking on the occasion, Shiva Thapa, an Olympic boxer from Assam, emphasized on the need for international facilities and infrastructure.

"Facilities and infrastructure should be of international standards. Athletes should prepare well before a competition to win it. There should be more training programs, more coaches so that people from villages can get experience and showcase their talent," he said.

Echoing similar views, G.A. Ibsopishak Sharma, a sports activist, said, "There are so many things to be done in term of infrastructure and facilities. We have to develop the infrastructure in order to achieve more, both at the national and international level."

M.C. Marykom, Bombyala Devi, Chekrovolu Sworu and many others Olympians are planning to set up an international standard academy where they can train young sportspersons from the region.

Marykom, the Olympic Bronze winning five-time world champion, said, "I am so happy to receive the cash award. Also the DoNer Minister has announced that I will get help in setting up my boxing academy."

There is a large pool of sporting talent in the northeast but what is needed is the right strategy to tap this talent and hone their skills. (ANI)