Guntur girl aims high to fly high

Guntur girl aims high to fly high

Guntur girl aims high to fly high.Jyothi Surekha, the 18-year-old engineering student, is ecstatic after she shot to fame (quite literally) at the...

Jyothi Surekha, the 18-year-old engineering student, is ecstatic after she shot to fame (quite literally) at the recently concluded Asia Cup Stage II archery tournament in Bangkok.She won the individual women's compound gold which was her second gold of the tournament. She edged past A Cojuangco of Philippines 142-140 to win the title.

Surekha (centre) along with her team; her parents played a key role in her success

Surekha hails from Nadimpalli village in Cherukupalli mandal of Guntur. The teenager first tried her luck in swimming and later switched to archery which brought her instant recognition. She has been participating in the under-13, sub-juniors, juniors and seniors division archery competitions since 2009 and has bagged 45 national and 17 international medals so far. In 2011 in Iran Surekha won a bronze medal in Senior Asian Games. In 2013, she won two bronze medals in junior world championship in China.

In March 2014, she won 3 gold medals, 1 silver and bronze medal each at the senior grand pre-finals. In September 2014, Surekha shared a bronze trophy in Asian Games held in South Korea. Surekha’s family have played a key role in her career as an archer. Her grandfather Venkata Subbarao, who himself was a Kabbadi player, became her physical education teacher. When Surekha was young, her parents Surendra Kumar and Sri Durga migrated to Vijayawada to boost her career in sports. They initially encouraged her to learn swimming.

At the age of five, Surekha swam through the Krishna River in 2002 thrice to enter her name into the Limca Book of World Records. Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu had then lauded her extraordinary talent.Subsequently her parents arranged to coach her in archery. She was initially trained by a coach named Rama Rao and then Raju in 2007 who is an archer in Hyderabad.Surekha was not only good at sports, but also excelled in studies. She is currently pursuing her engineering second year at the KLU Engineering College.

By Ravi P Benjamin

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