Mumbai: A gold on her return to action since 2016 has boosted her confidence and gymnast Dipa Karmakar believes she is primed to deliver her best at the upcoming Asian Games.
She recently won gold at the Artistic Gymnastics World Challenge Cup in Mersin, Turkey, on her return from injury since the Rio Olympics, and is currently undergoing intensive training under her coach Bishweshwar Nandi at Indira Gandhi Stadium in New Delhi.
“Right after the World Cup, I have been training intensively for the Asian Games. I cannot guarantee a medal but I do look forward to giving my best at the Asian Games. The gold in Turkey has given me the confidence that I needed before going to the Games. I have tough competition considering China, Japan and Korea are strong contenders and it will be a big challenge but I want to give my best,” she said on Saturday.
Dipa said her knee injury has completely healed after an anterior cruciate ligament surgery in Mumbai last year, which forced her to miss the Commonwealth Games in April.
The 24-year-old from Agartala said the sports scenario in the country is changing drastically in the country but there is still a long way to go. Dipa and athlete Hima Das are prime examples of athletes from small towns achieving success in unheralded sports. Hima shot into prominence with a 400m gold at the IAAF U20 World Championships in Finland recently.
“Though there is a long way to go, but the sporting scenario is changing for the better. Today, no matter where you come from, if you have talent and there is a spark in your performance, you get noticed,” she said, adding that success of athletes from small towns is also due to external support besides their hard work.