Who doesn’t remember Dipa Karmar, a young 24 year old girl from Tripura, who created history when she became the first Indian woman gymnast to represent us in Olympics. Not just this the first Indian gymnast to represent India at olympics in 54 years, since Tokyo 1964. Awarded with the ‘Padmashri’, the fourth highest civilian award in India, the young Indian came to limelight when she created history by becoming first Indian Gymnast to win a medal at Commonwealth games 2014. And now she has made it to the Indian gymnastics squad which will be representing India at the 2018 Asian Games in Jakarta.
Battle with injury and journey to Indian gymnastics squad for Asiads
Produnova, which is regarded as the most difficult vault currently performed in women’s gymnastics, became the reason of Dipa Karmakar’s popularity. Dipa is one of the only five women who have successfully landed the Produnova.
It was in 2017 that she shared the below tweet in inform her fans about a career threatening knee injury that she had during a practice session.
Hi everyone, ek update hai. Mujhe recently practice mein injury hua aur ACL ka surgery hua hai. Rehab shuru hai, jaldi wapis aaungi! :)) pic.twitter.com/wr3pRtOzAr
— Dipa Karmakar (@DipaKarmakar) April 4, 2017
Dipa had suffered an Anetrior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) injury after the Rio Olympics. This became a major setback in her career as she was not able to compete for India in the Commonwealth Games 2018, held in Goldcoast, Australia. But this did not stop her. She got treated by renowned Dr Anant Joshi, who also treated Indian cricketing legend Sachin Tendulkar in the past.
Rehab and hard work did wonders for her, as she created history in her injury comeback at the Artistic Gymnastics World Challenge Cup 2018, in Mersin. She announced her comeback in style when she became only the second Indian gymnast to win gold medal at a global event. A long gap of 2 years couldn’t stop her spirit to bring laurels for her country.
The men and women squads for the Asiads, in the artistic gymnastics, were picked after the two-day trials concluded at the Indira Gandhi Stadium, New Delhi. In the Dipa Karmakar aced it by going ahead of the entire team selected for the squad to be sent to Jakarta.
A fit again Dipa Karmakar was no undoubtedly included in the Indian gymnastics squad for the Asian Games, giving her the opportunity to repeat the history with an even better performance. It is said that experiences gives you life lessons. This two year gap has helped Dipa become wiser and she has decided not to use the dangerous ‘Prodonova’ move at the Asiads.
“If an athlete is preoccupied with speculation, then they can have no complains if their performance dips. When you are a professional athlete, there is a degree of expectation and you have to be mature to understand that because of this expectation, some people will always have things to say. Therefore, I wouldn’t say it was difficult, instead, my focus was purely on my recovery, ” she said in an interview with Mirror.
Who made the cut in the Indian Gymnastics Squad?
A strong team of 10 members will be representing India, in the Artistic Gymnastics event at Jakarta. Dipa Karmakar would be leading a team of five women namely: Pranati Das, Aruna Reddy, Mandira Chowdhury and Pranati Nayak.
And the men’s team for the same event will be lead by Rakesh Patra, who aced the trials ahead of everyone. He will be going to participate at the games with his team mates Yogeshwar Singh, Gaurav Kumar, Ashish Kumar and Siddharth Verma.
Can this young girl do this after a long gap of 2 years? We believe she definitely can and she has shown her grit at the world challenge cup. It is just a matter of time Now. Her coach Bishweshwar Nandi had pulled Karmakar out of the CWG 2018 due to her slow recovery. But he has full faith in her and is sure of an amazing performance from the young Tripura girl. She is fit now, she is better than ever and she is all determined to get a medal for India. We could not get a medal at Goldcoast, and we missed here, but the Asiads is going to be different hopefully.
The squad for rhythmic gymnastics will be announced later.