Manika Batra’s big statement, national coach made pressure to fix matches in Olympic qualifiers

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Manika Batra’s big statement, national coach made pressure to fix matches in Olympic qualifiers

New Delhi. Table tennis star Manika Batra has alleged that national coach Soumyadeep Roy had asked her to lose a match during the Olympic qualifiers in March and that is why she refused to take Roy’s help in the singles event at the Tokyo Olympics. Responding to a show cause notice from the Table Tennis Federation of India, Manika vehemently denied that she had damaged the reputation of the game by refusing to seek Roy’s help.

According to TTFI sources, the world number 56 said that if he had sat with him as the coach, whoever asked her for match-fixing, she would not have been able to focus on the match.

“There was a more serious reason behind my decision to play without the national coach besides avoiding the disruption caused by his intervention at the last minute,” Manika said in a reply to TTFI secretary Arun Banerjee.

“The national coach pressured me at the qualification tournament in Doha in March 2021 to lose the match against his trainee so that he could qualify for the Olympics,” he said. In short, asked me for match-fixing.

Despite several attempts, Roy could not be contacted. Player-turned-coach Roy has been asked to stay out of the current national camp. TTFI has also asked him to present his side.

Banerjee said, “The allegations are against Roy. Let them answer. Then we will decide about the future.”

Roy is a Commonwealth Games team event gold medalist who has also received the Arjuna Award.

Manika said, “I have proof of this incident which I will present at the appropriate time. The national coach came to my hotel room to ask me to lose the match and spoke to me for about 20 minutes. He unethically tried to pursue his apprentice who had come with him at that time.

Manika and Sutirtha Mukherjee qualified for the Olympics. Sutirtha practices at Roy’s Academy. Manika said, “I did not make any promises to them and immediately informed TTFI about it. His pressure and threats, however, had an impact on my game.

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