We are carrying out extensive fitness training for the Tokyo Games: Hockey Umpires Raghuprasad RV and Javed Shaikh -

We are carrying out extensive fitness training for the Tokyo Games: Hockey Umpires Raghuprasad RV and Javed Shaikh  

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With 50 days to go for the Tokyo Olympics, FIH Olympic Games Panel Umpires Javed Shaikh and Raghuprasad RV speak about their preparations for the quadrennial event 

  

Javed Shaikh

Khel Today Bureau

BENGALURU: While the Indian Men’s and Women’s Hockey Team players’ preparations for the Tokyo Olympics are being carried out in full swing, the only two Indians in the Olympic Games Umpire panel of 14 umpires from around the world – Raghuprasad RV and Javed Shaikh, who will be officiating at the all important Tokyo Olympic Games 2020; are carrying out extensive fitness training to prepare for the quadrennial event. With just 50 days to go for the tournament, the Umpires are ensuring that they are putting everything they have to be ready for the Tokyo Games.

Raghuprasad RV

Speaking about his preparations for the Olympics, Raghu Prasad RV, who has Umpired at major tournaments such as Olympic Games, Commonwealth Games, Asian Games and World Cups, said “I am currently doing my fitness training at home in Bengaluru. I attend online fitness classes every morning. I basically carry out strength and conditioning exercises, which strengthens my mobility and agility skills. We are doing briefing sessions with the FIH for the Tokyo Olympics as well. We are shown clips from previous matches, and we discuss an Umpire’s decision making for certain scenarios such as Penalty Corners, Video Umpiring and so on.”

Prasad added that it’s a great honour for him to represent India at the Olympics, “It’s a great honour to represent India. Javed and I started our national career together back in 2001 and now we will be going for the Olympics. I had first officiated at the 2012 London Olympics, so I will be officiating in my second Olympics in Tokyo now.”

Javed Shaikh, who has also officiated at the Olympic Games, Commonwealth Games, Asian Games and the World Cup said that the FIH has been carrying out fitness tests for all the Olympic-bound Umpires.

“We have been giving FIH fitness tests every two-three months in the last one and a half years. Fitness tests include a Yo-Yo test and Repeated Sprint Ability (RS) Test. We have to record our tests on video and send it to the FIH Umpires Managers, who grade us according to our performance” said Shaikh.

Speaking about being among only two Indians in the Olympic Games Umpire panel, Shaikh said, “It’s a really proud moment for me. I have already officiated in an Olympics, at the Rio Olympics. It’s a huge responsibility for me as I have got the chance of officiating in an Olympics again. There are only two umpires representing India, so we need to do our best. There will be pressure, but that’s what we like about our job.”

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