Clarifying his statement Monday that AITA should think of sending two doubles teams for London, Maken said he did it only because some “prominent and iconic” players brought to his notice certain issues concerning selection.
In any case, he added, it was not for the politicians or the ministry to interfere in the selection process and that it was for the AITA to pick the team keeping the national interest in view. Maken’s reaction came shortly after the AITA defended its decision to pair Leander Paes with Mahesh Bhupathi and lobbed the ball back into the ministry’s court, giving it five options to resolve the selection issue.
Maken said he does not wish to be a part of the selection process. “The sports ministry doesn’t wish to be a part of the selection process. It had raised with AITA certain issues which had been brought to its notice by certain eminent and iconic players,” said Maken.
“In the meeting held in the ministry today with AITA officials, certain options were suggested by AITA in the prevailing circumstance. The sports ministry advised the AITA to exercise the option which is in the best of national interest,” he added in the statement released after the meeting. —