"I was very impressed with the quality of the young gymnasts from India at the Commonwealth Games. Gymnastics is a very difficult sport and takes a long time to reach the international level. To win two bronze medals is a great credit to the gymnasts and to India," Brennon Dowrick told PTI during his visit to the capital recently.
The Olympic finalist - who competed in the 1992 Barcelona and 1996 Atlanta Games and who won two Commonwealth Games gold medals - says gymnastics is set to evolve as a popular sport in India even though there is an obsession with cricket in the country.
"Gymnastics is a spectacular sport that is holistic and brings together agility, flexibility and balance. The display of gymnastics at the CWG is sure to draw many youngsters to it. India has always been cricket country, but there will be interest in other sports as well," he says.
Dowrick, who has represented his country at seven world championships now fits into a new role of a motivational corporate speaker, often incorporating his medal winning routine display in his speeches all over the world.
In his role as a brand ambassador for the Business Club Australia that was launched here during the Commonwealth Games, Dowrick says he explored tie-ups to take the spirit of sportsmanship into corporate boardrooms.
"I have had a number of visits to India – I have travelled to India in the past to speak at conferences and events for Indian companies. I have very much enjoyed my visits and especially enjoy speaking to Indian companies as their employees are so motivated and hardworking," he says.
"... my unique presentation features a live gymnastics display – it is visually spectacular, memorable and reinforces my simple and effective motivational messages – bringing positive and lasting results to attendees," says Dowrick, who has given presentations with several Indian companies in the past.
Meanwhile, the retired athlete says he is always on the lookout for youngsters in gymnastics, his first love. "I look forward to hearing of more positive results from Indian gymnasts in the future," he says.
"I was very impressed with Delhi's Commonwealth Games. I think that the welcoming attitude and passion of the Indian people helped it be a truly great Commonwealth Games."