HomeKreedOn CandidsM Harikrishnan | The Unsung hero behind the success of Eldhose Paul...

M Harikrishnan | The Unsung hero behind the success of Eldhose Paul & Abdullah Aboobacker

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M Harikrishnan and Revolution of 17 meter

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M Harikrishnan is the latest sensation in the field of Indian athletics, especially in the field of the triple jump. Being a senior national coach only for the last one-and-half year Harikrishnan’s training has guided his national students Eldhose Paul, Abdullah Aboobacker, and Karthik Unnikrishnan to set the mark of jumping over 17 meters in the recently concluded Birmingham Commonwealth Games. Among the three, Paul and Aboobacker earned gold and silver medals, respectively. Only six jumpers in India have crossed the mark of 17 meters so far and three of them are students of Harikrishnan.

The former international triple jumper from India quit athletics due to a knee injury in 2016 and then joined the National Institute of Sports (NIS) Patiala to earn a coaching degree.

M Harikrishnan | The Exceptional approach

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Harikrishnan, the 36-year-old coach always wants to become a teacher for his students. Talking over the phone from Sports Authority of India (SAI) Bangalore, the employee of the Air Force explained,

“I have never wanted to become a trainer. Rather, I have become their friend. They never hesitate to share their difficulties. Moreover, my habit is to analyze the students personally. Each of the jumpers has a different psychological structure and physical ability. So, their training schedule will also be different from each other. In this part, I never punish them even if they fail to perform up to satisfaction. Rather I just become silent and they immediately can understand after watching my pale and silent face what wrong they have done on the track.”

M Harikrishnan – ‘Jump like the madman’

Harikrishnan’s this message to his silver-winning student Abdullah Aboobacker in the Commonwealth Games is now discussed heavily. Aboobacker was in the fourth position in the triple jump finals. The medal became uncertain. Harikrishnan could not go to Birmingham. Through the loudspeaker of his other student’s mobile phone, the 36-year-old coach shouted at Aboobacker saying, ‘jump like a madman’, and that changed the scenario where his student jumped 17.02 meters and brought silver.

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Harikrishnan said,

“I know Abdullah for the last four years personally. I know his physical and psychological condition exactly. So, I knew those words might click and it happened.”

The Motivator

Harikrishnan has already earned repute for his motivation. He said,

“I never ask my students to jump for medals. Rather I utter only one sentence stating them to try to break their personal best and if they can do it, medals will come automatically.”

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Significantly, Harikrishnan’s wife Aswathy who is a professor of history is fully involved in her husband’s coaching. The 36-year-old coach who only follows the style of his former SAI coach, Uday Kumar added,

“My wife is a part of my coaching team now. She has been an expert in motivating the students also. They can share their difficulties with Aswathy even if they feel shy in front of me.”

The Target

Harikrishnan feels his three best students, Paul, Aboobacker and Unnikrishnan have potential to jump 17.60 meters in near future. He explained,

“If they can maintain consistency and jump over 17 meters they will surely be able to bring medals from Asian Games next year. But my target is the World Championship next year. Jumping 17.60 meters is also possible for them but time is needed to achieve that performance.” 


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