New Delhi: Asian Games bronze medalist
Virdhawal Khade on Thursday said Indian swimmers need modern
training facilities and adequate foreign exposure to fetch
more medals at international events.
"We have a very talented set of swimmers in India, but we
lack modern facilities. International swimmers have the
benefit of some of the best training centers and latest
technologies," Khade told reporters from Guangzhou.
"But we will get there, we have started to get the right
results on the world stage. With better results, I hope the
right people will sit up and take notice and provide Indian
swimmers with better facilities, support, scientific testing
and other tools to improve our performance," he added.
Khade scripted history when he became the first Indian
swimmer in 24 years to clinch an Asian Games medal by notching
up a bronze in the 50m butterfly event in Guangzhou. He topped
his heat by clocking 24.56sec, finished third in the finals
with a timing of 24.31sec.
Khazan Singh was the last Indian swimmer to win a medal
at the Asian Games when he clinched the 100m freestyle silver
in the 1986 Seoul edition.
Khade hoped his medal will boost the popularity of the
sport in the country.
"It is definitely a very big result for Indian sport and
swimming in particular. Since Khajan sir`s heroics at the 1986
Asian Games, Indian swimmers have been improving steadily and
it was only a matter of time before we made it among the
"Things are definitely looking up now. With Prasanta`s
medal in the Delhi Games and this victory here, things are
moving in the right direction," he said.
Khade expected more help and support from the government
and federation now that India have won a bronze after 24
"The Federation and government have helped the swimmers
in the lead up to the CWG and I seriously hope they continue
to provide this support to us as it is much needed. The moment
the federation is professional and proactive, sponsors will
also pump more funds and support. I hope that our medals will
encourage them to extend all the support needed," he said.