With improved defence, Sakshi confident of CWG gold

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 23 Mar 2018 10:55:43





A NEW defensive technique added to her repertoire, Olympic bronze-medallist Sakshi Malik is confident that she would fetch her maiden Commonwealth Games gold medal when she takes the mat in Gold Coast next month.
The Rio bronze-winner has tweaked her leg defence on the insistence of her coach Kuldeep Singh Malik, something that has already got her a gold in the Commonwealth Championships in December last year. Speaking to PTI, Sakshi, however, refused to go into the details of the new technique that she has worked on.“I can’t give the details of the techniques. But as I said, I’m looking for a gold medal and more confident now.”In February this year, a controversial decision in the qualification bout against eventual silver-medallist Luo Xiaojuan of China cost Sakshi a place in the final of the Asian Championship in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.“Life has changed completely (post-Rio). There’s more responsibility on me now—to win more and more medals for India. I hope CWG is the beginning, ahead of the Asian Games in Indonesia later this year and Tokyo Olympics 2020.”

“The target is to win a gold medal for the country in Australia. Preparation going great and I’m giving my 100 per cent, training twice a day,” Sakshi told PTI from SAI Centre in Lucknow.According to her coach Kuldeep Singh Malik, her leg defence has improved and that will help her hold and attack.“It’s a work in progress till we achieve 100 per cent. It certainly makes a difference not only in defence but in the speed,” the coach said.Apart from training, Sakshi’s preparations include watching videos of her possible opponents from Canada and Nigeria.

“Canada and Nigeria will be the strong opponents. I’m preparing myself by watching their videos, the techniques,” she said.The wrestler, who competes for Mumbai Maharathi as captain in the Pro Wrestling League, said the experience has been very helpful.Eyeing triumph
over tragedy, Sathiyan wants gold rushDEALING with the loss of a parent dwarfs just about every other challenge in life, says India’s top-ranked table tennis player G Sathiyan, who feels he is a stronger and hungrier person going into next month’s Commonwealth Games after coping with the death of his father last year.The 25-year-old, who shot to fame by becoming the second Indian to win an ITTF event—the Belgium Open in 2016, is a strong medal hope in the Gold Coast Games starting April 4. He has also won a gold in the ITTF Challenge—Spanish Open
last year in the men’s singles category.

“I couldn’t participate in Rio as I had to play one tournament but my father passed away at exactly the same time. Dealing with that has made me stronger mentally. I thought nothing can be more difficult than this,” Sathiyan told PTI in an interview, recalling the trauma he went through when his father V Gnanasekaran passed away.Rajnath, Rijiju wish the best to CWG-bound teamHOME Minister Rajnath Singh wished the Commonwealth Games-bound Indian athletes all the success in the quadrennial multi-sporting event in Gold Coast and said a good performance will evoke a “sense of pride” among the people of the country.Rajnath made a brief appearance at the send-off ceremony of the contingent organised by the Indian Olympic Association. His deputy Kiren Rijiju was also present on the occasion, along with IOA president Narinder Batra and secretary general Rajeev Mehta.

“I am fully confident that the players who are going to the Commonwealth Games will bring laurels to the country. When a country becomes an economic power there is a sense of pride among the people of the country. Similarly, when a sportsperson brings laurels to the country, it evokes a sense of pride among the people of the whole country,” the Home Minister said.IOA slams ministry for raising ‘unnecessary issues’ on CWG contingentINDIAN Olympic Association President Narinder Batra slammed the Sports Ministry for raising “unnecessary issues” about the family members of Commonwealth Games-bound athletes travelling with them, asking it to apply the same standards of probity for its own bureaucrats.Tension has been simmering between the IOA and the Sports Ministry for some time, especially after the government’s ambitious Khelo India School Games held here last month. Batra chose the occasion of the India contingent’s sending-off ceremony for the Apri 4 to 15 Games in Gold Coast to vent his displeasure.