Sahara announces cash incentives for archers

Kolkata: Their relationship with the cricket board (BCCI) may be in troubled waters but Sahara India Pariwar on Saturday came forward to support Indian archers by offering them a total cash incentive of close to Rs 3 million.

A total of 37 archers have been selected who would get this incentive.

The 17-year-old Deepika Kumari, Indian archery`s biggest hope in the London Olympics 2012, got the lion`s pie of the incentive, based on her overwhelming performance in 2011.

She was given Rs 4.10 lakh, followed by Laishram Bombayla Devi (Rs 2.20 lakh) and Chekrovolu Swuro (Rs 2 lakh).

The trio had stunned world champions, Korea in the biennial World Championships to book Olympic berths. Deepika, meanwhile, had capped the year with a dozen international medals including the world junior gold.

Jayanta Talukdar, who is the only one from the men`s recurve brigade to have confirmed London 2012 entry, and Tarundeep Rai were given Rs 1.40 lakh each, while Rahul Banerjee following a forgettable 2011 was given Rs 70,000.

The men`s team will have one last chance to book London Games tickets when they compete for the quota places in the third World Cup to be held in Ogden from July 18-24.

"We are proud to be associated with the game of archery and hope the cash award would encourage them to perform better and bring glory and laurels to the country," resident head (Kolkata) of Sahara India Pariwar, Ranoj Dasgupta, said.

Dasgupta also said that the group had adopted 95 sportsmen from six disciplines of archery, boxing, shooting, tennis, track & field and wrestling, who are the London 2012 medal prospects.

The corporate giant had a recently went on to ink a five-year deal with Hockey India.