Mumbai: From lifting bundle of firewoods at Imphal’s Nongpok Kakching village to winning the 48kg category gold in the Commonwealth Games, Mirabai Chanu has come a long way.
Last year she had lifted 194 kgs (snatch + clean & jerk) in the same category to win India’s first gold after two decades at the World Weightlifting Championships.
Her peak performances came after dismal show at Rio Olympics where in a field of 12 lifters, she was one of two lifters who did not finish her event. “It was disappointing as I could clear only one attempt out of the six lifts in Rio. I thought of quitting the sport. But my mother motivated me to continue and I trained hard which translated into gold at the World Championships last year,” Mirabai said at an event here on Friday.
The 24-year-old talented lifter bettered that performance at the CWG in April but she missed the Asian Games due to a back injury and will not be able to participate at the World Weightlifting Championships in November.
“It is disappointing to miss out on those events. I had a dream to win medal at Asian Games but I could do anything due to back injury.
“I wasn’t able to move and it took time to figure it out. Now I am undergoing rehab at Reliance Foundation in Mumbai and have made a lot of recovery. I started training from a week and hope to regain full fitness soon,” she said. She has set her eyes now on the Tokyo Olympics.
“My next target is the 2020 Olympics. Next year is going to be busy for me. I have to participate in all competitions to qualify for the Olympics. Because of it (missing World Championships) I have to participate in nine competitions,” she added. Chanu is aware she will have to do more hard work to make mends for her Rio disappointment in Tokyo.