Dipa looks to better her best at Rio

Dipa, a Commonwealth Games and Asian championship bronze medallist in vault, worked hard to qualify for the Rio games after failing to make the cut in the World Championship last year.

Dipa Karmakar was felicitated in the Calcutta Sports Journalists Club's 'Coal India Annual Awards'.   -  PTI

With the Rio Games closing in, Dipa Karmakar, the first Indian woman gymnast to qualify for the Olympics, is looking to better her best score of 15.1 in vault.

Dipa, a Commonwealth Games and Asian championship bronze medallist in vault, worked hard to qualify for the Rio games after failing to make the cut in the World Championship last year. “I was determined to earn an Olympic quota in the Rio test event after (finishing fifth and) missing it narrowly in the World Championship last year. I had to qualify this time. I had this target in mind and I did some hard training under the guidance of my coach.

“Right now I am focussed on doing well in the Olympics. I can achieve a better score. I will train hard and do my best to get there… I have to work on my execution,” Dipa said on Wednesday.

Dipa was here for a felicitation organised by the Calcutta Sports Journalists’ Club (CSJC).

Dipa’s coach B. S. Nandi threw more light on the gymnast’s capability. “Since we have 100 days in hand, there is a very good chance that she can improve her score. We will do our best so that she rectifies her mistakes and performs better.

“She can go up to 15.7 or 15.8 in vault. However, a gymnast can get injured anytime during the practice and a small injury can affect the training. If everything goes off well, God willing, she can achieve a good score.”

However, the 22-year-old gymnast was modest about her chances in vault. “There are several top gymnasts, such the Americans and Russians, who are tough competitors. They did not come to the test event because they had already qualified for the Olympics. My aim is to go out and give my best performance,” said Agartala-based Dipa.