Mirabai’s coach glad to be ‘on the right track’

Mirabai Chanu’s coach Vijay Sharma said the performance of the diminutive lifter from Manipur was a great confidence booster ahead of the Asian Games.

Mirabai Chanu must work on her strength and technique to be on the Asian Games podium, according to her coach.   -  AP

A conscious effort backed by a systematic approach in training helped Mirabai Chanu claim the women’s 48kg gold medal with an unprecedented performance in the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games on Thursday.

Mirabai, the only reigning world champion from India to compete in Gold Coast, rose to the expectation as she shattered many a record on her way to set a new high of 196kg (86kg in snatch and 110kg in clean and jerk) in the Games.

As it happened: Day One, Commonwealth Games

Mirabai’s coach Vijay Sharma, a perfect guide to the diminutive lifter from Manipur, said Mirabai’s performance was a great confidence booster ahead of the Asian Games. “We treated the CWG as a test event to check what more we needed to do to get a good result in the Asian Games, where the fight would be neck-and-neck. We have become successful in achieving our target,” Sharma told Sportstar from Gold Coast over phone.

Focus on recovery

Following her gold medal winning performance in the World championship on November 30 to become the first Indian world champion after 20 years, Mirabai focused on recovery. “We concentrated on the process of de-loading for recovery of muscles — she did just 180kg in the National championship in February. Once the muscles gathered strength, she increased the load. In the run-up to the Games, every day it was like pulling the load of a truck can carry.

“In the world championship she had done five out of six attempts. Here she completed all her six attempts successfully. That should enhance her confidence level. Our target was to achieve between 196kg and 197kg here and touch 200kg in the Asian Games. Glad that we are on the right track,” said Sharma.

According to Sharma, the 23-year-old must work on her strength and technique to be on the Asian Games podium.

In the 2016 Rio Olympics, Mirabai had hit the headlines for wrong reasons after becoming one of the two athletes who failed to lift the weight in three clean and jerk attempts. However, the gritty lifter bounced back to hoist 85kg in snatch (second best) and 109kg in clean and jerk (best) to achieve a total of 194kg and take the gold medal in the World championship in Anaheim, USA, last year.