AUGUSTO RODRIGUES | NT
Sports Authority of Goa (SAG) and the 36th National Games secretariat will be erasing the tag of “so near and yet so far” when Union Minister of State for Sports Kiren Rijiju remotely inaugurates five venues created to be used for the Games and as sports legacy for Goa on Saturday evening from Navelim.
The Navelim Sports complex in Navelim, Sawalwada Multipurpose Hall in Pernem, Fatorda Multipurpose Hall in Fatorda, the Campal Multipurpose Hall and Sports complex in Ponda are the five facilities that will be inaugurated by Rijiju.
The squash court in Vasco, the swimming pool in Campal, the Campal open ground, the Astroturf hockey ground, the Chicalim Multipurpose ground, facilities for beach volleyball, canoeing , kayaking and Yachting are expected to be operational well before the National Games that will be held from October 20 to November 4, 2020.
“The five facilities that are going to be inaugurated will be accessible to sports people now. The squash court and tennis courts should be ready in two months time. The Astroturf ground in Peddem is ready and can be used. It is not being inaugurated because the changing room facilities are in completion stage,” Chief Engineer Anil Ringne told The Navhind Times.
“The remaining facilities should be ready before the monsoon. If, for some reason there is a delay – which I do not expect – we have a plan B in place. The inauguration on the 18th marks the end of all infrastructure work required,” said Ringne.
The 36th National Games in Goa took the form of a bubble – bursting and getting itself blown back – with the government of Goa, at times, unable to meet its requirements and the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) adding to the uncertainty with its demands for financial compensation .
“The team put its head together as a unit and it is nice to see that all time lines are strictly being adhered to. The launch even is expected at the end of this month,” Ashok Kumar, sports secretary, government of Goa and CEO told this newspaper.
The infrastructure for the Games is created by the SAG and the Directorate of Sports and Youth Affairs looks after the logistics. “All equipment will arrive as planned. We send a weekly report to the government on the status of all equipment that has to be procured and everything is on schedule,” Shashank Tripathi, director of DSYA told this newspaper.
Thirty seven sports disciplines are being held and apart from cycling and shooting which are being held in New Delhi, the other thirty five are being held on 25 different sports facilities in Goa.
The squash facility and the swimming pool in Campal are two facilities that will need a little bit of extra time in comparison to the other facilities that need to be readied. From the twenty facilities being used for the National Games, nine were built and the remaining sixteen are refurbished.
“I am happy for the sportspeople in Goa. These facilities that have been created open a window to sports talent in Goa. I am in Navelim at this moment and this venue provides space for twenty sports disciplines. Just imagine how this one venue will help sportspeople from South Goa. I am extremely happy for all sports people of Goa,” said VM Prabhudesai, executive director of SAG .
AUGUSTO RODRIGUES | NT