first_imgHowever, Sardar and Mary Kom felt that the Bollywood However, Sardar and Mary Kom felt that the Bollywood celebritys mass appeal will help raise awareness about Olympic sports ahead of the Games in Rio de Janeiro in August. “Salman has a huge fan base. He has good views on sports and its a good thing for Indian sports that he has come on board. A lot of people are getting connected to Olympic sports because of him. (But) People are entitled to their views. I respect their opinion,” Sardar said. “It hasnt happened before, its a good thing for the athletes. Its good for us to have a brand ambassador like him,” opined Mary Kom, a bronze-medallist from the 2012 London Olympics. Indias first and only individual Olympic gold-medallist shooter Abhinav Bindra also backed the IOAs decision. “Dear @BeingSalmanKhan, am sure you will use your tremendous goodwill to help Indian Olympic Sport and Olympic athletes in their pursuit towards excellence. “Congratulations on being appointed ambassador of the Indian Olympic Team! An absolute honour which comes with great responsibility!” the ace marksman said in a series of tweets. Commonwealth Games gold-medallist discus thrower Krishna Poonia said although an athlete would have been a better choice, Salmans popularity is undeniable. “There is no dearth of athletes in our country. There is P T Usha, Sachin Tendulkar, so many who have done us proud. The public, however, loves filmstars and probably it was thought that it would help popularise Olympic sports. I wish all the luck in his new role,” Poonia said. PTI PM PMadvertisementlast_img read more

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