When it comes to sports, India is fortunate that its athletes find a way to overcome the impediments that its officialdom throws in their paths—whole areas fraught with politics and unprofessionalism. If India is winning medals at the Asian Games, it has been possible in spite of official bungling, due to athletes’ own talent, resilience and steely determination. The government does provide facilities and exposure, but it’s a mite compared to the odds athletes face.
Many of the stories of the Games medal winners so far, and those who may or may not win, are tales of victories carved through adversity.
World No. 5 rifle ace Ravi Kumar, who won the 10m air rifle mixed bronze along with Apurvi Chandela (above, in photo) on August 19 to open India’s medal account in Indonesia, was bitten by the shooting bug when he would casually accompany his grandfather to Rajpal Singh’s pioneering shooting range in Johri village in Baghpat district of Uttar Pradesh. Ravi’s father was a supervisor at a...