Indian archery’s golden girls Bombayla Devi, Deepika Kumari and Rimil Buriuly beat a formidable Korean outfit 219-215 to win gold in the World Cup Stage IV in Wroclaw, Poland on Sunday. But with the next World Championships only a month away, there’s no time for celebration. In an interview with Olympic Gold Quest the trio spoke of their win and the advantages of having an international coach by their side.
What was going through your mind during the final encounter against Olympic champions Korea?
Bombayla: The Koreans are the best archery team in the world and we were a bit nervous in the beginning. It was tied until 18 arrows, but we shot like we normally do in training and I guess we got lucky in the end and won.
Deepika: We knew that if we stay close to Koreans’ score early into the match, they would come under pressure. We did just that and finally won it in the last six arrows.
Rimil: Koreans are tough opponents, but we decided not to take too much pressure by focusing too much on them. Our strategy was to be confident no matter who is in the opposition.
How has the presence of coach Lim Chae Woong helped?
Rimil: It was very important to have him behind us during such a close final. He kept us focused, motivated and ensured we weren’t worrying about our opponents’ score.
Deepika: During the last six arrows the conditions got very windy. Lim told us to shoot exactly how we do in practice and we managed to hit four 10’s. This was the defining moment of the final.
Rio 2016 is three years away. What is the kind of support you need to win a medal at these Olympics?
Deepika: Along with training we need to pay more attention to fitness. OGQ has helped ensure we remain fit and injury free. For eg. I had a wrist injury last month and OGQ team quickly brought me to Mumbai and showed it to an expert hand specialist. Their response was quick and my injury healed in time for the Poland World Cup.
Rimil: Training camps should continue and we should continue to have the support team tat includes a physio, mental trainer and a masseur. It’s also crucial that we have access too world-class equipment and accessories at all times.
Finally, how do you plan to celebrate your victory once you’re back in India?
Rimil: We’d love to celebrate it, but we don’t have any time to do so. The world championships are coming up in Antalya next month and we have to train for the selection trials. In fact, we’ll be joining the camp in Aurangabad tomorrow.
Deepika: Celebrations can wait, as our next focus is the World Championships. In India, our next stop is the training ground.