Mentored by Rajat Chauhan, archer Priya Gurjar eager to take her game to the next level

The year 2021 has been memorable for Priya Gurjar, who secured gold medals in cadet women’s and mixed team events and an individual silver in the World youth championships in Wroclaw, Poland, in August and a women’s team silver in the World championships in Yankton, USA, in September.

Priya Gurjar

Priya Gurjar with her mentor and idol Rajat Chauhan.   -  Y. B. Sarangi

Guided by her mentor and idol Rajat Chauhan, 17-year-old compound archer Priya Gurjar has tasted success in quick time and is eager to take her game to the next level.

The year 2021 has been memorable for Priya, who secured gold medals in cadet women’s and mixed team events and an individual silver in the World youth archery championships in Wroclaw, Poland, in August and a women’s team silver in the World championships in Yankton, USA, in September.

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“The World youth medals gave me a lot of confidence. I learnt a few things in the World championships. It was windy and I did not understand when to release the arrows in such conditions. I still got good scores. I have to work on this,” Priya told Sportstar on the sidelines of the National archery championships here on Wednesday.

“I also want to shoot better scores in the ranking round,” said Priya, who was 10 with 687 points in the individual rankings and lost to eventual champion V. Jyothi Surekha in the quarterfinals at the Nationals.

Priya has been looking up to Arjuna award winner Rajat, a World championships silver medallist and an Asian Games team gold medallist, ever since she got into archery in late 2017. “My father was Rajat bhaiyas teacher. He persuaded my father to put me in archery. I just follow his advice,” he added.

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The Jaipur girl, who claimed a team silver on her elite National debut in the 2019 Asian championships, is keen to shine in the Asian Games. “I am focusing on my basics. I am capable of winning gold medals in bigger events. It is the mentality that matters,” said Priya.

Rajat wants Priya to mature in her game. “She is going through a process and will take some time to really excel,” said Rajat.

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