No archery, no hope for Bangladesh


Bangladesh Olympic Association Secretary General Syed Shahed Reza (C) speaks during a press conference at the BOA auditorium on Sunday. — Courtesy photo

Excluding shooting and archery, Bangladesh’s hopes have narrowed for notable success at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games to be held in England from July 28 to August 8.

Since first appearing at the multi-sports carnival in 1978, Bangladesh have so far won eight medals – two gold, four silver, two bronze – and all the medals have come from shooting.

Although archery is relatively a newer sport in Bangladesh, it has seen notable success on the international stage, including 10 gold medals at the 2019 South Asian Games in Nepal, three gold at the 2022 Asian Cup in Thailand alongside Ruman Shana’s individual success in making a direct entry into the Tokyo Olympics.

As the Commonwealth Games Federation has ruled out these two events, the chances of winning medals have been reduced when a total of 30 Bangladeshi athletes will compete in seven sports – athletics, boxing, gymnastics, swimming, weightlifting, wrestling, tennis table – during the 22nd edition. games.

The opening ceremony of the Games will be held at Alexender Stadium on July 28, and 2016 South Asian Games gold medalist weightlifter Mabia Aktar Simanta will carry the Bangladesh flag in the parade.

“We have less chance of winning medals at the Games because shooting and archery have been excluded,” Bangladesh Olympic Association secretary general Syed Shahed Reza told a conference in press at the BOA auditorium on Sunday.

“Bangladesh has done well internationally in shooting and archery, but we hope our athletes in other disciplines will do their best to improve.

“We hope for better performances from our athletes and I think this will help them prepare for other international competitions to come,” he said.

More than 5,000 athletes from 72 teams – including 54 Commonwealth countries and 18 territories – are expected to take part in 280 events across 20 sporting disciplines.

The 50-member Bangladeshi contingent, including 20 officials, will begin leaving the country in phases for England from July 20.

The day after the end of the Commonwealth Games, the light of the fifth Islamic Solidarity Games will be lit in Konya, Turkey, while Bangladesh can expect some success.

A total of 58 Bangladeshi athletes will compete in the eleven sports disciplines – athletics, archery, fencing, gymnastics, handball, karate, shooting, swimming, table tennis, weightlifting, wrestling – in Turkey from August 9 to 18 .

Around 6,000 athletes from 55 countries will take part in 380 events from 19 sports disciplines of the Islamic Solidarity Games and 13th South Asian Games gold medalist fencer Fatema Mujib will carry the flag of Bangladesh in the parade of the opening ceremony.

Reza disclosed details during the press conference on the overall progress and prospects of the Bangladeshi athletes for the two international games.

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