Will practice hard to get medals in Rio: Dipa Karmakar

Agartala, April 22 (IANS) India’s first woman gymnast to qualify for the Olympics, Dipa Karmakar said here on Friday that she will devote herself to serious practice to win medals in the upcoming Rio Olympics.

Accompanied by her coach Bisweswar Nandi, Dipa returned to a huge welcome in her home state Tripura on Friday.

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“I would now concentrate in serious practice at SAI (Sports Authority of India) coaching centre in Delhi,” she told reporters.

“My only target is to get medals in Rio Olympics, nothing else. I will try to deliver my best in the Olympics,” the country’s latest sporting sensation said.

Hundreds of sports lovers, officials, admirers and well-wishers received Dipa on her arrival at the Agartala airport from Delhi.

“I would try utmost to get gold medals in the forthcoming world meet,” said Dipa, who will stay here for a few days with her family before joining practice in Delhi.

The 22-year-old became the first Indian woman gymnast to qualify for the Olympics and capped it with a gold medal at the test event in Brazil’s Rio de Janeiro, where the summer Olympics would be held from August 5 to 21.

Dipa is only the second Indian gymnast to have won a Commonwealth Games medal (2014).

She finished fourth in the Asian Games in the same year and then won bronze at the Artistic Gymnastics Asian Championships in Japan in 2015.

A five-time national overall individual champion between 2010-2014, Karmakar was given the Arjuna Award last year.

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