The playground of Government Senior Secondary Girls School, Model Town, where gymnastics classes are being conducted by the sports department has become more active than ever before. Now, players look more active and more zealous.
Reason: Dipa Karmakar, who has created history as she is the country’s first woman gymnast to enter the Olympics final at Rio. She has become an everyday topic of the conversation of budding players and inspiration for them.
Goldy, 17, is a national level player and daughter of a gardener. Goldy, after performing a table vault, says, “Mere teacher kehte hain ki main Dipa Karmakar jaisi hun.’ (My teachers say that I am like Dipa Karmakar).” Gymnastics coach, Satinder Pal Kaur, who was standing next to her, watching her performance minutely, hastily said, “To reach at that level, you have to work hard. Just take her as your inspiration, do not divert your mind when you get such compliments. Keep yourself focused.”
The coach said that Goldy is a brilliant player and seeing India’s entry in gymnastics has definitely inspired her to perform with much dedication. As many as four other girls have also started coming to the ground for practice after Dipa got qualified for Rio Olympics 10 days ago.
Margarate, 13, whose father is a rickshaw-puller, said, “My father wants me to learn gymnastics as he told me that Dipa Karmakar is also from a small village and now she has become a star.” “Maine abhi join kia hai, seekh rahi hun taki main bhi Dipa ki tarah khel sakun,” she said, while practicing some of the initial exercises of the game.
RS 50 DIET NOT FOR ALL
Only six players here are ‘lucky’ enough to get diet worth Rs 50 from the department. Some bananas and a few packets of milk were lying on a cemented slab in the ground where players played.
One of the officials said with such a poor diet, how one could expect the players to go to the Olympics.