Dipa ready to vault to great heights again

The gymnast has recovered from injury and is gearing up for the WC in Germany

After the Asian Games disappointment, Dipa Karmakar is itching to get back to her best.

The woman who put India on the world gymnastics map has recovered from injury and is preparing for the Cottbus World Cup in Germany beginning on November 22. It is a qualifying event for the Tokyo Olympic Games.

“I am now fully fit and look forward to competing in Germany,” Dipa told The Hindu earlier in the week at Bhubaneswar, where she was one of the speakers at the Ekamra Sports Literary Festival.

The 25-year-old, who had stunned the world with her successful execution of the Produnova routine on the vault on her way to fourth place at the Rio Olympics, is determined to make amends for the disappointment at the Asian Games in Malaysia in August.

She had hurt her knee and had failed to qualify for the vault final. She also had to withdraw from the team event. A month before the Asian Games, Dipa, who hails from Tripura, had won gold in vault at the FIG Gymnastics World Challenge Cup in Turkey. It was her first event in nearly two years; she had been battling a knee injury.

Regaining confidence

“That gold gave me a lot of confidence,” she said. “My training for the Germany event is going on pretty well. But the competition is going to be tough there, as some very good gymnasts will be participating.”

Her coach Bishweshwar Nandi said he was expecting a good show from her in Germany. “After recovering from the injury, she has to get back to her best,” he said.

“We are working on some new exercises. The event in Germany is one of the eight that are available for Olympic qualification. We have not decided yet which other events she would compete in.”

Dipa said she was glad to notice that new talented gymnasts have begun to emerge from India. “It is great to see girls like Aruna Reddy and Pranati Das doing well,” she said. “I am happy that I could help Indian gymnastics hog the limelight.”

A book on her would be out, soon.

“All this has made me feel more responsible.”

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