Bangladesh Olympic Association (BOA) secretary general Syed Shahed Reza hoped that Bangladesh would fare much better than they had in the previous editions of the South Asian Games since the athletes are better prepared this time aroud.
The BOA secretary general said this during a pre-event press meet at the BOA auditorium yesterday in presence of officials of different participating disciplines.
Bangladesh, comprising a 595-member contingent with 462 athletes, would take participate in 25 out of 27 disciplines in the regional multi-sport meet, scheduled to be held in Kathmandu and Pokhara from December 1 to 10.
In the last edition held in India in 2016, Bangladesh won a total of 75 medals, including four gold medals.
“We have high expectations this time around. Our athletes will do much better than the last edition as they’ve had better preparation,” Reza said.
When held at home for the last time in 2010, Bangladesh had clinched as many as 18 gold medals. When asked why the BOA high-ups are not hoping to even eclipse that haul, especially with regional sporting superpower India not participating in at least 10 disciplines, Reza said, “We had home advantage in 2010. Furthermore there was year-long training ahead of that games which helped them win so many gold medals. However, we are hoping of good outcome this time around without thinking of who is not taking part.”
The BOA spokesman also said that the Bangladesh Youth Games held earlier this year was a milestone event, which helped them find more young players in different disciplines for the SA Games.
The Bangladesh swimming and cycling teams have already reached Nepal while the other teams will leave in turn, starting with the volleyball team on November 25.
Reza also informed that the budget for the Bangladesh team in these games is Tk 30 crore, out of which To 19.5 crore is being spent on training while the rest is for participation purposes.
The press conference was attended, among others, by BOA senior vice-president Sheikh Bashir Ahmed, SA Games’ Bangladesh contingent coordinator AK Sarker, chef de mission Asaduzzaman Kohinoor and the two deputy chef de missions -- Mohammad Omar Faruk and Syeda Zannat Ara.