Bengaluru: With their focus firmly on the forthcoming Olympics, India’s Rio-bound archers — Deepika Kumari, Bombayla Devi Laishram and Laxmirani Majhi — are giving it their all at the Sports Authority of India, Southern Centre here.
The women’s recurve team who booked their Rio tickets after winning silver at the World Championships in Copenhagen last year are confident of a good show at the quadrennial event.
Late last year, the troika made the cut following tough selection trials. Since then, they have claimed two silver medals at the World Championships and the Shanghai World Cup while missing bronze by a whisker at Antalya last week.
“Our preparations have been good and we are very positive. We have worked on improving our co-ordination. We are very positive in our approach and will keep ourselves fit — mentally and physically — so that we can perform well there,” said a beaming Deepika on Wednesday.
Echoing the 22-year-old Ranchi archer’s views, Bombayla claimed, “The coaching staff is supporting us a lot and we are practicing hard.” Outspoken right-hander Majhi believes the group is in great shape. “We are doing yoga and keeping ourselves fit. We will continue to work hard till match day and aim for a medal,” said the Jharkhand archer.
To get acclimatised to the conditions; the team will leave ten days prior to the qualifiers. Being her third Olympics, the Imphal-born Bombayla is hoping to end the medal drought. “We couldn’t do well at Beijing because it was our first and then (in the) second, we had issues with the weather conditions. This time, we will give our best to bring back home a medal,” she said.
Meanwhile, Deepika has grown in confidence over the last few years following the London Olympics debacle. “Cloudy conditions, it was a lot for me. Last time, there were certain areas which I couldn’t handle because of the mental pressure. I have worked on it now and (how) to handle pressure. I have learnt a lot from the last Olympics. “I worked on my mental aspect and fitness. Overall, there is a lot of improvement,” added Deepika.