The 13th South Asian Games being held in three cities of Nepal is doing its best to keep the journalists and readers guessing.
Given that it is being held in a third-world country, the facilities and flow of information should not be expected to be as smooth as in events such as the Olympics or Commonwealth Games held in developed nations, equipped with better sporting and communication infrastructure.
But what the journalists coming to Kathmandu, Pokhara and Janakpur are facing could be described as confusing, at best tiring, when it comes to gathering information regarding the medals count.
In bigger and better managed events, there are result sheets and starting lists, including Games record, provided to journalists by the organisers. Those are usually available on racks at every venue and can also be printed out from the official website.
Barring a few exceptions, there are no such arrangements in most venues here. However, the most frustrating part is the official website of these Games, which continues to give confusing updates on the medals tally, correcting the figures a few times a day. The local newspapers reported various accounts of medal-tally on the first two days before converging on the official version.
That official version, though, as far as Bangladesh’s medals are concerned, does not quite match the official version of the Bangladesh Olympic Association, which is tallying the country’s medals with representatives at every venue.
Brought to the notice of the Local Organising Committee, which has bestowed the task of tallying to medals to local journalist-turned-officials, one such person responsible for record-keeping said: ‘Please bring your list of all the medals. We will update our medals tally after checking those provided by you.’