Earlier this year, Bhavani had also reached quarterfinals at the Asian Fencing Championships in Hong Kong, where she failed to clinch any medal. But this ace Indian athlete fulfilled her dream in Commonwealth Championship in Australia.
India’s C A Bhavani Devi won a gold medal in the Sabre event at the Senior Commonwealth Fencing Championship 2018 held in Canberra, Australia. With this, Bhavani Devi has become the first Indian to clinch gold at the Commonwealth Championship.
In this rare distinction, Bhavani defeated England’s Emily Ruaux by 15-12 in the final.
Bhavani was competing in the Senior Women Sabre event, where she had qualified for the knockout rounds by finishing second in the league stage, which involved four groups with six competitors each.
Earlier, the Chennai-born Bhavani Devi had put it across Catriona Thomson (Scotland) in the semi-final.
She also recorded emphatic victories in the quarterfinals, dispatching her opponent by 15-5 and registering an easy win.
Earlier this year, Bhavani had bagged a silver medal at the Tournoi Satelite Fencing Championship.
Bhavani Devi has been going strong, leading one after the other victories for India at International events.
Last year she had won gold at the World Cup Satelite Tournament in Reykjavik. Bhavani had also reached the quarterfinals of the Asian Fencing Championships in Hong Kong but could not grab any medal.
Post-her match on speaking with Sporstar Live, Bhavani quoted, “ I have faced her (Emily) before and won against her, but only in the league-stage matches, in which the points required to win is five. This is the first time I have won against her in a knockout round. In the first half in the final, I was leading her 8-5, but I was nervous, and she started winning points. In the end, I managed to win 15-12.”
On being asked about her disappointment at the Asian Fencing Championship, she said, “Definitely, it (missing out on the Asian Games) was a very big disappointment, having missed the criteria for qualification. To qualify, she had to finish in the top eight of the Asian Championships in 2018.”
India’s CA Bhavani Devi wins gold medal in the Sabre event in the Senior Commonwealth Fencing championship 2018 held in Canberra.#BhavaniDevi Devi is the first Indian to win a gold medal in the Commonwealth championship.
She defeated England’s Emily Ruaux 15-12 in the final. pic.twitter.com/Cwerl9Yktj
— All India Radio Darbhanga (@airdarbhanga) November 25, 2018
“Even now, when I think about it, it saddens me. But it is over, and I can do nothing to change it. I have many other competitions, and I am going to focus on them”, Bhavani added.
Bhavani concerned about the future of Fencing as a Sport
Sponsored by GoSports Foundation, Bhavani has participated in only eight out of 13 fencing tournaments that were played this year – due to lack of funds.
Talking to Indian Express she said, “Even in TN we don’t have the proper equipment and in fencing, it is compulsory to have the proper equipment and take safety precautions.” She is also concerned about how inadequate infrastructure can really affect the performance of Indian athletes.
In an interview with Indian Express, Bhavani’s coach Sagar quoted, “In Commonwealth and Asian Championships, a full Indian team (24) takes part. But for World Cups and World Championships, only a few travels because they have to spend from their pockets. There are very few sponsors interested in supporting fencers.
After achieving this feat, Bhavani Devi is now targeting for the 2020 Olympic spot.
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