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Sunday, August 1, 2021

another one from Ranchi ~ this time Archer Deepika Kumari, making Nation proud

If you have recognized her immediately,  great… that is Deepika Kumari, archer.  She won gold medal in the 2010 Commonwealth games in the women's individual recurve event. Kumari qualified for the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, where she competed in the Women's Individual and Women's team events, finishing in eighth place in the latter.  She was conferred with Arjuna Award and this is the photo of her receiving the award from Mr Pranab Mukherjee. 

At just 27 years of age, Deepika Kumari has made India and women everywhere proud with her astounding achievements in the field of archery. The champion just won a gold medal at the Archery World Cup in Paris, proving how well-prepared she is for the Tokyo Olympics.

It is a game with we need to get associated emotionally and historically – all our Ithihasa puranas hail those possessing this skill as great people ~ it is archery….

When we were young – the heroes were Sunil Gavaskar, Viswanath, Bedi, Chandra, Venkat, later Gavaskar, Kapil Dev,  Krish Srikkanth, Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, Virender Sehwag … and those who followed Cricket spoke names of Rick McCosker, Jeff Thomson, Dennis Lillee, Greg Chappel, Rodney Marsh, Greenidge, Viv Richards, Lloyd, Roberts, Holding, Garner, Croft, Marshall .. ..  ~ in short Cricket, the game, the players were the main topics of discussion .. now we followed Virat Kohli’s men in blue in World Test Championship.  Most of us could recognize players like Chetan Sakariya.

Just as additional info :  It is a 20 member strong squad that is touring England now with a host of support staff.  Ravi Shastri is the Head coach; Vikram Rathour (Batting coach); Bharat Arun (Bowling); Ramakrishnan Sridhar (Fielding); Physio-   Nitin Patel,   Yogesh Parmar; Strength and Conditioning coach: Nick Webb and Soham Desai         - then there are Throwdown specialists:   Raghavindraa &  Dayanand Garani.  Since they are right handers - BCCI, for the first time, hired an additional hand during the 2018 Asia Cup in Dubai. Sri Lanka’s Nuwan Seneviratne has played two first-class matches. The idea behind hiring Seneviratne was to get good preparation against several left-arm fast bowlers. Added is Video analyst:  Hari Prasad Mohan and Massage therapists:  Arun Kanade &  Rajeev Kumar

The third and last stage of the 2021 Hyundai Archery World Cup took  place in the French capital of Paris. Charlety Stadium is the venue for all phases of the event, including finals, and attendance is expected to be high given that it’s the last major international ahead of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. The World Cup Stage 3 in Paris has seen a stellar performance by star archer Deepika Kumari. She pulled off a hat-trick of gold medals. This has really raised hopes that she will score a win in Tokyo too, which will put her in the rarest club in this country of more than a billion people. Only five Indian women – Karnam Malleswari, Mary Kom, Sakshi Malik, Saina Nehwal and PV Sindhu – have ever won an Olympic medal.

Star Indian archer Deepika Kumari on Monday regained the number one position in the global rankings following her hat-trick of gold medals at the World Cup Stage 3 here. The 27-year-old from Ranchi, who had achieved the top spot for the first time in 2012, on Sunday claimed gold medals in three recurve events -- women's individual, team and mixed pair.

"This is going to take Deepika to the number one spot in the world rankings on Monday," World Archery had tweeted on its official handle after Deepika's gold rush.Deepika first combined with Ankita Bhakat and Komalika Bari to notch up the women's recurve team gold with a comfortable win over Mexico. She then paired up with husband Atanu Das and the couple from a 0-2 deficit to down the Netherland's Sjef van den Berg and Gabriela Schloesser 5-3 for the gold medal. The Ranchi archer then blanked 17th ranked Russian Elena Osipova 6-0 to cap a perfect three out of three in the recurve women's section, her fourth individual World Cup gold medal.

Overall, she has nine gold, 12 silver and seven bronze medals in the World Cup. "This is the first time I've won all three medals in a World Cup. I'm really happy but at the same time, I've to continue improving as we have some very, very important competitions lined up," Deepika had told PTI after her triumphs.

There are many different kinds of bow shapes. However, most fall into three main categories: straight, recurve and compound. Straight and recurve are considered traditional bows. In archery, the shape of the bow is usually taken to be the view from the side.  A recurve bow has tips that curve away from the archer when the bow is strung. By definition, the difference between recurve and other bows is that the string touches a section of the limb when the bow is strung.  The reason for the name “recurve” comes from the shape of the bow’s frame. The tips of a recurve bow curve out towards the target, which give the bow more power when pulled back. Large recurve bows, depending on the draw, can fire several hundred yards at an arc. However, his also means that a recurve with a larger frame is harder to pull the string back. The required effort to draw an arrow and hold it in place while aiming depends entirely on the size of the bow.  Compound bows are the modern cousin of the recurve, and have become very popular in recent decades, both for hunting and shooting. Compounds use a pulley system that takes strain off of the bow and provides slack for the archer, making it easier to shoot with accuracy.

Ranchi, Jharkhand has given India MS Dhoni too – but perhaps Deepika has had to face more hurdles.  Sharing a home with her uncle and aunt, Deepika and her family did not even have fans or cupboards in their home, and fights about money were frequent. Due to the absence of a bathroom, they would bathe in a nearby stream, which landed Deepika in the hospital with boils from the unhygienic water. A myriad of problems related to her living conditions plagued Deepika’s life in her early days. Talking about how her family’s condition motivated her to get away from home, she said, “Maine socha, main chali jaaoongi ghar se bahar toh kam-se-kam ek ka burden kam ho jayega.” Today, her parents have built a house with the money she has earned.

When she finally went to the 2016 Rio Olympics, she went without a nutritionist or physical trainer. Instead, she was accompanied by government officials and a cook, and these officials travelled business class while the sportspeople sat in economy, nursing their tired muscles in cramped seats as they prepared to represent India.  

Great Deepikakumari has sailed over all the hurdles – we heartily appreciate and celebrate her efforts, wishing her all the very best in Olympics. A Gold medal !! 

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
28th June 2021. 

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