Dwayne and Katya Coelho’s performance at the Asian Games in Jakarta could be attributed to lack of professional training; lack of proper equipment; and lack of co-ordination within various arms responsible to prepare athletes for international event. However, it has left Dwayne on a silver cloud with the Yachting association of India already beginning work to prepare him for the Olympics.
“We are working on a training plan for Dwayne. We are negotiating with some professional coaches in China and if things work out, have plans to send him to China for a year as he is the top RS X sailor of the country,” a senior member of Yachting Association of India (YAI) disclosed to The Navhind Times, over the phone from New Delhi.
“Windsurfing needs a coach to be with the athletes for a long period of time. No quick fixes can be given. The coach has to know his surfers and this can happen to a period of long time. Since we could not afford coaches for a long time, we used the services of Donald. We are changing are strategy in preparations for the Olympic,” added our source.
“I am not a professional coach. At this level of competition my children required a professional coach to be amongst the best. There is a lot of skill that Dwayne and Kaya needed to learn to shine at the Asian level. We have now written to the Yatching Association of India and the Sports Authority of Goa (SAG) to empanel international coaches,” Donald Coelho, father of the two, told The Navhind Times.
Dwayne and Katya represented India as RS1 Mixed team. “We had to pull Katya out of the competition as she developed a knee injury. We took the risk of pulling her out as we did not want the injury to develop into a ligament perform. With Katya out there was little Dwayne could do alone and that is why we finished last,” claimed a member of the Task Force 2020 over the phone.
Social media was abuzz with rumours that the Coelho siblings were deprived of proper equipment to represent their country.
“The Government of India had allocated specific funds for windsurfing much before the start of the Asian Games. They (Dwayne and Katya) never intimated that getting equipment was their priority. That is why we send them and their father Donald as coach for a thirty day camp to Thailand and later to Jakarta. Had we known that they required equipment, we would have curtailed their overseas camps so as to leave some money for their equipment,” stated a senior member of Yachting Association of India (YAI).
“Dwayne has many times been supported by the Government of Goa and we were led to believe that they would be getting equipment from the government. Governments usually lease out equipment to surfers. They lease equipment free of cost if the athlete is representing the country or lease it out if equipment is used locally. We though the same system would be followed by the government of Goa with the Coelho siblings,” added a member of the 2020 Task Force.
“The equipment is costly. But since Goa is going to host the National Games we expected the government to buy the boards for the Games and lease it out to Dwayne and his sister for the Asian Games . Dwayne did well in the races he participated. He finished third, fourth or fifth. There was no problem with his performance. It was the injury that Katya suffered that pegged the team down,” stated a senior member of YAI.
“The boards that they were using are not being manufactured anymore and that is why it was difficult to arrange for spares during the Asian Games. It is pointless talking about the equipment used for the Asian Games now. The priority is to get professional coaches for them now and that is what I have conveyed to SAG. That is why they have earmarked Rs two lakhs per month for the coach to train the Goan athletes for the National Games and thereafter,” stated Donald.
Sports Authority of Goa (SAG) Executive Director V Prabhudesai did not respond to queries.