The 2022 Commonwealth Games is considering a left-field bid to allow shooting and archery to be staged in India months before the main event in Birmingham. Pressure has been building on administrators to reverse their previous decision to drop the sports from the medal programme after India threatened to boycott the Games.
The Indian Olympic Association, which has a strong record in shooting, was left furious last year that shooting, in particular, was to be omitted for the first time in more than 50 years. As an alternative, the nation has now offered to host, at New Delhi or Chandigarh, separate championships for both two shooting and archery. David Grevemberg, the Commonwealth Games Federation chief executive, will chair a meeting next month when the offer could be agreed in principle.
"The CGF can confirm that it has now officially received a proposal from Commonwealth Games India [CGI] to host a Commonwealth shooting event and potentially an archery event in India during 2022, the year of the XXII Commonwealth Games," he said in a statement, "The proposal is supported by the National Rifle Association of India [NRAI], the Government of India, the International Shooting Sport Federation and World Archery. The proposal will be reviewed and considered in January and February by the CGF and discussed with Birmingham 2022 delivery partners."
The option has arisen after officials travelled to New Delhi to avert a potentially damaging crisis for the Games. India's offer will be considered by the CGF executive board next month before going to a full vote of the 71 member associations. Nigel Adams, the sports minister, suggested last summer that a compromise agreement could have been reached. Adams said: “I totally understand how passionate people are about shooting across the Commonwealth. We want India to be here, no question. “I have already written to the Commonwealth Federation to see if we can accommodate shooting in some form, maybe a Commonwealth shooting championships. It's important that we do get a competition in 2022.”