Sutirtha bags three gold
New Delhi (PTI): Thrilled at her feat of bagging three gold medals, including a singles title at the Slovak Junior TT Open, promising paddler Sutirtha...
New Delhi (PTI): Thrilled at her feat of bagging three gold medals, including a singles title at the Slovak Junior TT Open, promising paddler Sutirtha Mukherjee has credited regular overseas exposures for India's best-ever show in any table tennis tournament abroad. "It feels really proud while standing on top of the podium and hearing your national anthem. And I got that opportunity thrice in the tournament," said Sutirtha, who won gold in doubles and girls' team category, besides singles. "We have been playing in the international competitions regularly. It gives us confidence in taking on strong TT playing nations," the 15-year-old from West Bengal added. The Indian contingent finished with overall tally of four gold and two silver medals with boys' claiming gold in doubles and silver in the team competition.
"Hopefully I will be able to continue with this form in the Asian Junior Championships in August," she said. This was by far the best performance by any visiting Indian team, surpassing their record of one gold, two silver and two bronze at the Guatemala Junior & Cadet Open last year. The junior paddlers participate in six to seven international competitions, including continental and world events each year and are making gradual progress. Coming off from back-to-back ITTF sanctioned tournaments, the girls' team coach Arul Selvi said the team had put in a lot of hard work. "Though we just won a silver in the Polish Open just prior to this tournament. We were confident before going into Slovak Open. We had prepared well at the preparatory camp in Lucknow. And the fact some of players played in the Commonwealth Championships here was also beneficial," said Selvi, who is also a former national champion.