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Course of action against Manika for ‘outburst’ against national coach to be decided at TTFI meeting

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Manika Batra had expressed disappointment over not being allowed her personal coach in her corner for the singles matches.

Annoyed by star paddler Manika Batra’s “outburst” against national coach Soumyadeep Roy, Table Tennis Federation of India (TTFI) secretary-general Arun Banerjee said the federation’s executive committee will decide on the course of action at its next meeting.

“It is grossly unfair on her (part) to go after the national coach. Yes, Sutirtha (Mukherjee) trains at his academy but Soumyadeep has been appointed the national coach,” Mr. Banerjee told The Hindu from Tokyo on July 27.

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On July 26, after exiting the women’s singles in round of 32, Manika in an interview to Sportstar / The Hindu had expressed disappointment over not being allowed her personal coach in her corner for the singles matches.

“Our national coach here (Soumyadeep Roy) is Sutirtha’s personal coach, so it helped her. I think if my personal coach could also sit for my matches, it would have helped a lot,” Ms. Manika had said.

Mr. Banerjee, however, said Ms. Manika knew even before arriving in Tokyo that it was impossible for her coach Sanmay Paranjape to be in the arena for her matches. “Even before we left, she knew that her coach had P category accreditation, which means he had access only for practice facilities,” Mr. Banerjee said.

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“I don’t understand the need to go after Soumyadeep for no reason over here. I will put forward the team leader’s (M.P. Singh) report to the TTFI executive committee during our next meeting and the committee will decide the future course of action.”

Manika preferred to play her singles matches without the national coach on he sidelines, with Mr. Paranjape advising her from the gallery. As much as her and A. Sharath Kamal’s exploits on the table, the empty chair in her corner emerged as a talking point of India’s table tennis outing in Tokyo.

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