Actions speak louder than words and Tejaswin Shankar is a testament to the saying. The lanky high jumper from New Delhi, in just a span of a couple of years, has established himself in the both, the national and the international circuit. The 19-year-old now has some prestigious records to his names, but the journey to the top has not been easy.
The 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games are around the corner and each commonwealth nation is aiming for just one thing: to top the medal tally. The Indian contingent approach and goal are no different. Amidst several famous names that are expected to fetch a medal surely, there’s a young lad from Delhi who is slowly emerging to the big scene.
Tejaswin Shankar – From 22 yard cricket pitch to a jump of 2.28M
Like most youngsters in India, Tejaswin Shankar too wished to play cricket for India. He was en route to becoming a successful right arm fast bowler until his physical education teacher saw his athletic potential. Sunil Kumar Patial realized that Shankar was a natural when it came to High Jump and strongly advised him to pursue High Jump. And as they say, the rest was history.
Tejaswin then started training under his coach and hasn’t looked back since then. Positive results of his training started coming in, and in 2015 at the Asian Youth Championships in Doha, he clinched his first international medal in form of a bronze.
2016 was the real progress of young prodigy Tejaswin Shankar
It was in the year 2016, when people in the sports industry suddenly started noticing Tejaswin. In February that year, he won his major international medal. At the South Asian Games in Guwahati, Tejaswin Shankar clinched the silver medal, finishing second to gold medallist W.P. Manjula Kumara from Sri Lanka. He managed to clear 2.17m and through this jump, he set a new national record for his age group.
Later that year in September during the Open National Games, Shankar bettered his own best by jumping 2.22m, which was also the second highest in Indian history. Hoever, soon after this event, Shankar faced his first major career hiccup when he was forced to miss the Poland World Junior Championships due to a groin injury.
Just like good days, bad days come to an end as well.
10th November 2016, the date that Tejaswin Shankar will never forget. The crossbar was set at 2.26m and Shankar was ready at the starting line. 13 steps and one jump later, Tejaswin had become the new national champion. He broke a 12-year-old national of 2.25m set by Hari Roy at the 2004 Asian All-Stars meet in Singapore.
2018- A positive start for youngster Tejaswin Shankar
Fast forward to February 2018, Tejaswin Shankar scripts history once again at the Big 12 Indoor Athletics Championships in Iowa. He once again set a new national record by jumping 2.28m and became the first Indian to clear the mark. He did not stop there.
At the AFI (Athletics Federation of India) Federation Cup in Patiala, the qualifications for the upcoming CWG took place. The qualification mark for high jump was set at 2.25m. Tejaswin, continuing his sublime form, equaled his thus far best performance by jumping 2.28m and easily qualified for the 2018 Gold Coast Games. Will he be able to achieve a similar feat at the upcoming games is the real question.
Tejaswin Shankar: Is he a Commonwealth Games medal prospect – KreedOn Opines
Tejaswin Shankar, without a shadow of a doubt, is one of India’s brightest medal prospects for the upcoming 2018 Gold Coast Games. The nation’s eyes will be set on the CWG debutant. Internationally, Shankar has maintained an exceptional track record and the onus is on the 19-year-old to replicate his brilliant form at one of the highest stages of the sport.