Old is always gold for archer Dipika Kumari

New Delhi: For ace archer Dipika Kumari "old is always gold", as the 20-year-old Ranchi girl came out with flying colours in the just-concluded World Cup Stage IV in Wroclaw, Poland after a stretch of poor form forced her to change her bow and re-unite with former coach.

Dipika`s decision to move under the tutelage of her childhood coach Dharmender Tiwari and shun the new bow not only helped her regain the lost touch but win three medals in the World Cup, including a gold in the women`s recurve team event.

Apart from the gold, Dipika also bagged a bronze each in recurve women`s individual event and recurve mixed team pair event along with her partner Jayanta Talukdar.

"Of late I was really struggling with my form. I was World No.1 in 2012 but then moved out of the top-10 rankings. The frequent change of coaches did not help either. The I decided to return to my old coach Dharmender sir, who knows everything about my game. I also started to use my old bow instead of a new one," Dipika told PTI on the sidelines of a felicitation function here today.

"Dharmender sir was the chief coach of Tata Academy so he was hardly associated with the national teams on abroad tours. He got chance to be with the national team in the World Cup and he will also be with us in the Asian Games."

In the World Cup Stage IV in Wroclaw, Indian men`s recurve team had to settle for a silver after losing to Mexico 3-5 in the final. Besides, the Indian compound mixed pair of Abhishek Verma and Puvasha Shende also clinched a silver medal.

Having been there earlier Dipika definitely wants to rule the world once again but the present focus for the Indian is the Incheon Asian Games, starting next month.

"It happens in game. It happens in every athletes career. I an presently world no. 14 and obviously want to be World No. 1 again. But all my focus now is on the Asian Games," she said.

She, however, said the competition at the Asiad will be much tougher than the World Cup events.

"I am really working hard for the Asian Games. But the competition in the Asian Games will be different from the World Cup. It is going to be very tough and we need to put in a lot of hard work," Dipika said.

"All Asian teams like Korea, Chinese Taipei, Japan, China are very tough. So I won`t say I will win a gold or silver or bronze. I can only assure that I will give my 100 per cent.

"My performance is improving and because of this I will approach the Asiad with a positive mindset," she said.

It is incidentally the first time India`s both men`s and women`s recurve team won medals in a World Cup event and Dipika said the archers gained a lot of confidence from their performance in Poland.

Apart from Dipika, Laxmirani Majhi, Rahul Banerjee, Tarundeep Rai, Jayanta Talukdar Govindas Singh were the other archers who were present at the felicitation function held at veteran BJP leader and Archery Federation of India president V K Malhotra`s residence here.

Indian compound archers are presently in Utah, USA on a 10-day training programme at the Easton Salt Lake Archery Centre, while the recurve archers are perparing in the national capital.

Both the compound and recurve archers will leave for Gwangju, Korea on August 28 for a 20-day acclimatisation training camp ahead of the Asian Games to be held at Incheon from September 19 to October 4.

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