Dipa Karmakar wins gold in Artistic Gymnastics World Challenge Cup

New Delhi: Dipa Karmakar became the first Indian gymnast to win gold at a world event on July 9 and said she would now go all out for the top spot at the Asian Games in Jakarta beginning next month.
The 24-year-old Karmakar won the women’s vault at the FIG Artistic Gymnastics World Challenge Cup in Mersin, Turkey, with a score of 14.150 points ahead of Rifda Irfanaluthfi of Indonesia (13.400 points) and local girl Goksu Uctas Sanli (13.200).
“More than the gold, what was important for me was to perform at the optimum level. I am happy I could do that considering the fact that at the beginning of the year, I was hobbling back to fitness,” Karmakar said.
“Getting back into top gear makes me believe that my knee has healed completely and I should now be able to go all out at the Asian Games,” added Karmakar, who was participating in her first international event since narrowly missing an Olympic medal in Rio in 2016.
A knee injury while training in April last year meant that Karmakar was out of competition for the last two-and-half years. The ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) injury needed surgery and because she needed more time to recover than expected, Karmakar missed out on the Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia, earlier this year.
So, dominating a world event on her comeback was more than satisfying. “Topping the preliminary round gave me a lot of confidence. I am very thankful to my coach and people who have worked hard to bring me back to competitive gymnastics,” added Karmakar, who finished the qualification round with a score of 13.400.
However, Karmakar couldn’t make an impact in the beam where she finished fourth. “The overall result was good as I had started training seriously only after March,” she said.
Rakesh Kumar Patra, the other India to compete in Turkey, finished fourth in the rings. In the parallel bars, he was fifth. Patra is also in the five member men’s team selected for Asian Games.

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