Will Continue Junior Events Alongside Senior Tournaments: Manu Bhaker
A chock-a-block international calendar and a looming burnout threat notwithstanding, teen sensation Manu Bhaker said she will continue to shoot in junior events for the next four years, apart from simultaneously competing in the senior shooting tournaments.
File photo of Manu Bhaker (Image: SAI)
New Delhi: A chock-a-block international calendar and a looming burnout threat notwithstanding, teen sensation Manu Bhaker said she will continue to shoot in junior events for the next four years, apart from simultaneously competing in the senior shooting tournaments.
Last month, the 16-year-old Bhaker was in a league of her own as she shattered two records en route to adding the Commonwealth Games gold medal to the glowing list of achievements in her relatively nascent career.
"I have four more years left in junior and I plan to shoot all these four years. I want to shoot both junior and senior simultaneously and gain as much experience as possible," Bhaker, a gold medallist on her maiden senior ISSF World Cup, told PTI.
Bhaker has a packed calendar ahead, beginning with the senior and junior World Cups in Germany -- Munich and Suhl -- followed by a tournament in Czech Republic.
Also lined up are big-ticket events such as the Asian Games in Indonesia, World Championships in Korea, which will be the first quota event for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, and the Youth Olympic Games in Argentina.
And the gifted girl from the Goria village in Jhajjar district of Haryana is more than prepared to take on the challenges.
"I take everything as experience, getting a chance to participate in every event is something I take very seriously," she said.
The rationale behind her choice is that more competition at the expense of training means more opportunities to experience match pressure and challenging situations.
Asked about the Asian Games, she said the upcoming multi-sport extravaganza will be a different challenge from the Commonwealth Games.
"Asian Games is going to be a different challenge with different countries, it is not necessary that we will win every time, but getting up strongly after going down is what matters eventually and your character comes through."
While she has been winning medals, including gold, regularly in top international tournaments, Bhaker said winning at Olympics is not everything.
"Olympic is not everything and lot of other things are there. But every athlete wants to dream of winning an Olympic gold medal, that is fine, but one should not think about it too much. There is no point putting pressure."
Bhaker spoke about associating herself with daily hygiene startup PeeSafe, which is focussed on raising awareness about the importance of daily hygiene and personal care.
The brand launched 'Natural Intimate Wash' for women as its latest product.
On her association with the brand, Bhaker said, "Ever since I started playing, using unhygienic and infectious washrooms has been my biggest fear. For me, this problem was something that is meant to be dealt with."
"I am able to address the hygiene and sanitation problems with the help of this brand. I believe we will together be able to bring change by helping Indian population adopt hygienic lifestyle habits and stay fit."
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