It’s that time of the year again when splashes, kicks and whistles are heard from the swimming pool as the aquatics contingent of KGP gears up for its biggest challenge – the inter-IIT aquatics meet. The last three years have been nothing short of a dream for our swimmers as they have bagged the golden shield on each occasion. Striving to live up to similar high expectations this year, these assiduous athletes are pulling out all stops to make sure that they come out on top once again albeit the absence of a coach and the graduation of more than half the team.
TSA brings you an inside scoop of the happenings at the pool.
“We need a coach!”
Expectations were high that the team would get a new coach at the start of this semester but events like convocation and the appointment of a new Director have delayed this further. Nevertheless, the team is not compromising on their training schedule. Quoting Dushyant Mishra, a 3rd year student who is striving to make his inter-IIT aquatics debut – “We are having much more extensive practice this time compared to previous years. However, a nagging problem is the absence of a qualified referee when we practice amongst ourselves; it’s left to the few senior members of the team to settle issues.” It will surely be a pity if the inefficient PTI selection process for coaches leads to the aquatics team missing out on silverware this year.
Starting from Scratch
One more Pool!
State of the art lights have been provided in the swimming complex, but the fact that the campus has only one pool is definitely a crunch matter. IIT Bombay has 2 pools, despite having a smaller campus and a smaller strength. This skewed proportionality in KGP is elucidated by Shreyas:
What about the Girls?
We caught up with A.M.Aishwarya, a 2nd year student who has a good chance of making it into this year’s team. According to her, there is more uniformity between boys and girls this year as compared to the last as far as workouts and practice sessions are concerned. Her main complaint is regarding the practice time slots – “Girls don’t swim so much. I used to go in the morning and there would be just a few people learning. Even the slots are very inconvenient; from 6-7 in the morning and 4-5 in the evening. No one wants to wake up that early and we usually have classes till 5:30 pm. We can have something like a pool just for competitive swimming and another one solely for learning purposes. That way, even girls can have a convenient time slot and improve their strokes.”
Like so many other sportswomen on campus, she vehemently supports having more inter-hall sports for girls as a means of practice and motivation to play in the inter-IITs. She also highlights the importance of combining the women and men’s team practice sessions. In her words:
Expectations and Looking Ahead
The absence of a coach along with the exodus of 8 senior swimmers from the team will most likely prove to be an insurmountable setback to bagging the top prize. Shreyas plays it safe when he says - “It’s difficult to assess our exact chances this year. We might get one podium position in all the events. But we will make sure that medal or no medal, we give it our all.” However, one must take into account that this is a fresh but talented squad and with proper practice and skill development they are bound to match up to the impeccable record set for them by their seniors.
We, at The Scholars’ Avenue, wish the team the very best and hope to see the gold rush continue!