Delhi has world class facilities: British athletes

By Alkesh Sharma, IANS
Wednesday, September 29, 2010

NEW DELHI - Even as their media nitpicked and wrote damning reports about the state of preparations for Commonwealth Games, some British athletes who are here found the facilities “world class”, “simply amazing” and with “foolproof security”.

“This is my first visit to India. I was very keen to come here as I have heard so many good things about this country. Earlier I have represented England in various tournaments in other countries like South Africa and Italy. If I compare the security arrangements and other things then India is at par with them; in fact better in many areas,” Jocelyn Hunt, 15, member of the five-member British women gynmastic team, told IANS.

Hunt, 15, is visiting India for the first time and for 18-year-old Becky Wing this is her first Commonwealth Games appearance.

“I am really liking the spicy Indian food and warm hospitality. Here people are very friendly and responsive. We are not feeling that we are away from home, in fact it seems that we are sitting in some part of London itself,” she said.

Becky said “This is my first commonwealth games and I am very excited about it. Though I have seen so much on television and read in newspapers about the security concerns and other issues but I am not at all bothered about them. I have found everything in place and there is a foolproof security cover,” she said.

“The environment here is very thrilling and I do not find much difference if I compare the arrangements with Beijing. Moreover, we are not thinking about anything else except winning medals. My aim is to figure in top three in the medal tally,” said Wing, who is studying Mathematics at a college in London.

Imoga Cairns, 20, who had won a gold in gymnastics at Melbourne CWG in 2006, said “I am very satisfied, in fact more than satisfied with the arrangements. Here we have world class arrangements of accommodation, food and other facilities,”

She added, “Yes, there were so much of negative stories about India’s failure in meeting the deadlines, collapse of bridge but I do not know the reasons behind this. My experience so faris simply amazing,” she said.

Cairns is a strong medal hope for the UK. She could not participate in the Beijing Olympics because of an ankle injury.

“I am targeting to again win a commonwealth gold medal and I have prepared very hard for this. I had to miss the last Olympics because of the ankle injury but now I am all set to hit the bull’s eye. We think that Australian gymnasts can give us a stiff competition for the medals,” she said.

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