India fencer Bhavani Devi (Photo/ Bhavani Devi Twitter)
India fencer Bhavani Devi (Photo/ Bhavani Devi Twitter)

You learn from your failures, happy with experience gained in Tokyo Olympics: Bhavani Devi

By Vishesh Roy | Updated: Jul 27, 2021 12:08 IST


New Delhi [India], July 27 (ANI): While analysing her performance in the Tokyo Olympics, India fencer Bhavani Devi on Tuesday said she is content with her showing at the Games and will take learnings from this, and try to do better in the upcoming tournaments.
Bhavani had gone down against France's Manon Brunet in women's individual sabre 15-7 in the Round of 32 match on Monday. The experienced French fourth seed won the match very comfortably after Bhavani had defeated Tunisia's Ben Azizi Nadia to become the first Indian to win a match in fencing at Olympics.
"For me, I felt that I have given my best. Of course, I was a little disappointed after the second round, I always wanted to win a medal for India. It is not only in Olympics, I want to win medals everywhere. You learn from your failures, I accept what I have done in this Olympics. I am happy about all the experience I received during the process," Bhavani told ANI in an interview on Tuesday.
"You always improve at each competition, the journey to arrive in the Olympics was not easy. I worked hard and I finally represented India at the Olympics, I have learnt a lot, I will definitely work harder to do better in the coming tournaments," she added.
When asked about how she felt after winning her Round of 64 fixture against Nadia, Bhavani said: "Definitely yes, qualifying for the first time and then winning for the first time gives all the athletes energy to do better in the next events. For me, it is not just about round 1 or 2, I always want to have that medal. Anyhow, I exited in Round 32, but the support I received from people and our Prime Minister Narendra Modi motivated me, and it has given me the energy to work harder and give better performances in the coming tournaments."
After defeating Nadia, Bhavani competed against Brunet in the Round of 32. This fixture was a difficult one, but Bhavani impressed one and all with her fighting spirit.
"We knew that I will be competing against this athlete in the Round of 32, so we had some plans. I started with those plans, she was doing better in the first half, I changed some moments in the second half and I was getting points. I made a good defence in 2-3 plans, my plan was correct but I was maybe a little nervous," said the 27-year-old.
"I need to sustain that moment throughout the match, not just for 2-3 points. Fencing is quite fast, you need to keep on changing your tactics and you need to understand your opponent. I am happy with the learnings I have gotten by being here," she added.
When asked about the government support for her training, Bhavani said: "I was included in the TOPS Scheme in April, their support helped me in the last four months of my training. We had been training with the Italian international team, we had been taking part in all their national camps. They helped me go to France for special camp two weeks ahead of the Olympics."
"That was a very intense camp, I improved a lot in the last few months by taking part in more camps. The Tamil Nadu government has been supporting me since 2015, I received support from the Sports Authority of India as well. I have received the support from the right people at the right time and this helped in Olympics preparations," she added.
India has so far won just one medal in the ongoing Olympics as weightlifter Mirabai Chanu returned with silver. Bhavani feels that this Olympics has already been special for the entire Indian contingent.
"It is just been few days that the Olympics has begun, many of them won their first-ever match in the first round and this is an improvement. Also in this Olympics, we have new athletes and some new disciplines which is seeing our representation for the first time like fencing. We are improving well, we need to work a little bit harder to get on the podium. Our top athletes are still left to play their matches, I am sure they will do their best," said Bhavani.
"First of all, I am really happy that they have conducted the Olympics. If it would not have happened, then it would have been very sad for all athletes. We have to follow a lot of rules and restrictions, we have to follow the process everywhere, there are lots of processes that we need to follow. But for me, it is all okay. I have done hard work in 15 years and that is why I finally qualified for the Olympics. I have played in the Olympics, I am feeling happy about it," she signed off. (ANI)

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