Jamshedpur: India’s archery medal drought in Olympic Games may well end thanks to inclusion of mixed team event.
Archery guru Dharmendra Tiwary is optimistic that Indian archers stand a chance to clinch medal in mixed team event (one archer of each gender) . “It is good that mixed team event has been included in next year’s Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan for the first time. The Indian mixed teams have won medals in World Cups on more than one occasion and I am optimistic that they can come up with a similar show in the Olympics,” Tiwary said.
He was also hopeful of a medal win in team event. The women’s team comprising Deepika Kumari. Laishram Bombayala Devi and Lakshmi Rani Majhi made it to the quarter-finals in the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
The mentor said medals in individual category depend on the form of archers on a given day.
The highly experienced coach, who was bestowed with the Dronacharya award (lifetime category) earlier this year, added a psychologist was needed for the Indian archers to overcome nerves in big-ticket competitions. “But a psychologist should have adequate knowledge about the game and have a fair bit of understanding of an archer’s need on the mental front. He should be able to understand the amount of pressure an archer is undergoing and try to calm it. Countries like Korea and the US have psychologists as support staff,” Tiwary said.
The head coach of the Jamshedpur-based elite Tata Archery Academy (TAA) said crowd pressure puts a negative effect on the psyche of Indian archers when they line up to shoot in top-level competitions. “Unlike India, spectators fill the galleries on both sides of the shooting range in international competitions, including Olympics. Our archers have never competed in front of a large presence of spectators,” the 47-year-old explained.
Tiwary is involved in archery coaching for over two decades now and has mentored top-bracket archer and Olympian Deepika Kumari in her formative years at the Tata cradle. He was the coach of the Indian’s men’s squad in the Rio Olympics.