First Indian woman gymnast for Olympics

First Indian woman gymnast for Olympics

First Indian woman gymnast for Olympics

 Dipa Karmakar on Sunday created history by becoming the first Indian woman gymnast to qualify for Olympics as she booked a berth for the Rio Games.

In a strong performance at the final test event here, 22-year-old Dipa garnered a total score of 52.698 points to qualify for artistic gymnastics in Rio Games to be held here in August.

Apart from being the first Indian woman, she will also be an Indian gymnast qualifying for the quadrennial extravaganza after 52 years.

Since the independence of the country, 11 Indian male gymnasts have taken part in the Olympics (two in 1952, three in 1956 and six in 1964) but this will be the first for an Indian woman at the Olympics.

Hours after qualifying for the Olympics, Dipa clinched the gold in vaults finals at the test event of the Rio Games.  She scored 14.833 as her best effort to finish first in the women’s vaults finals and win the gold in a rare such feat by an Indian gymnast in a global event.

The International Federation of Gymnastics (Federation Internationale de Gymnastique) has confirmed Dipa’s Rio Games qualification in its official release.

The world body listed Dipa as the 79th gymnast among individual qualifiers in the list of the qualified women artistic gymnasts.

Her first vault, the much difficult Produnova, gave Dipa 15.066 points, the highest among the 14 competitors. But a poor show in the uneven bars took her points down as she collected 11.700, the second worse among the 14 participants.

The Tripura girl secured 13.366 and 12.566 points in beam and floor exercises.
Deepak Kagra, an international referee, said that after Dipa’s strong performance, it was certain that she would qualify for Rio Olympics.

“It was a very good score from Dipa and we were certain that she would qualify. Now, the world body has published the names of the gymnasts who have qualified for the Olympics and her name is there. The gymnastics community is proud of Dipa’s achievements,” he told PTI.

The 22-year-old could not clinch an Olympic berth in the World Championships in November last as she finished outside the podium (fifth place).

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