Vikas gears up for a busy season

Vikas gears up for a busy season

Vikas gears up for a busy season

Sweat trickling down his face, Vikas Gowda didn’t hesitate even a moment when the eager photographers asked him to pose one more time, this time with the discus in his hand.

The strapping discus thrower had just finished a training session, taking another step forward in what is an important season for him as well as for India. It is the season of the Commonwealth Games and the Asian Games and Vikas, obviously, will be counted as a medal prospect in athletics, especially after his exploits last season, when he won the Asian Championships gold.

Vikas has started the big season on an encouraging note, winning the silver at the Diamond League meeting in Doha on Friday but the 30-year-old only sees that as a small step in a long journey. “I am happy with the silver but I could have done better,” said Vikas, speaking to reporters at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium during a brief visit to Bangalore. “But it is early May and silver is a decent way to start. The season is still warming up and I can improve as the season progresses,” he said.
Vikas had a best of 63.23M on a humid night in the Qatari capital.  “Technically, I was a bit off, I should have been more relaxed, I was forcing it little bit,” he said. “Stay relaxed -- that is what the big guys do -- they are so smooth and relaxed. That is what I am working on and every day I am getting closer.”

Having broken into the big league, Vikas has plans to compete in all the Diamond League meets where men’s discus is a part this year. Shanghai is the next stop but it doesn’t have men’s discus on the programme and Vikas’ next competition will be in Rome on June 5.

On his goals, Vikas said his main idea was to keep improving. “I don’t like to set specific goals, things can change every day. My main goal is to improve every day. I have won medals in both Commonwealth Games and Asian Games and I would like to improve upon it too.”

Vikas had fitness concerns last year and he said he had managed to address it during the off-season. “My knee is pretty good, back is a lot better. Hopefully it will keep getting better as the year progresses,” he said.

Vikas, who trains under John Godina in the United States, had issues over funds but he said things were changing for the better. “The central government has helped me out a lot, hope it continues,” he said, while acknowledging the support of Olympic Gold Quest.  “They have been supporting me since 2009,” he said. “I definitely wouldn't be at this level without their support.”