Brother-sister archer duo feel proud to represent country

The Indian men's recurve trio of Jayanta Talukdar, Tarundeep Rai and Rahul recently won the World Cup Stage IV gold in Shanghai with a record 224 score, highest so far by the men's side.

The women's team of Dola, Deepika Kumari and Laishram Bombayla Devi, which had won silver in the World Cup Stage III at Ogden (USA), bowed out in the initial round.
However, Rahul's elder sister Dola made the cut for the World Cup final to be held in Edinburgh on September 18-19.

"It is a great feeling. It gives us immense pride that we both are in the top group of Indian archers. It's a big achievement," Dola, who had won the World Cup final in 2007, told PTI in an interview.

"Rahul has matured a lot. Obviously, he along with Jayanta (Talukdar), Mangal (Singh Champia) and Tarundeep (Rai), is there in the top tier for sometime now. They understand their responsibility and are living up to it winning medals at regular intervals," she said.

Way back in 1996 when Dola was practising at Baranagar Archery Club, Rahul, six years junior, would watch her shoot at the bull's eye from the long range.

Rahul was learning karate at that time while Dola had already made herself an integral part of the national team.Dola said that she gradually brought her brother to archery.

Four years after joining the club and training with her sister, Rahul competed in Sub-junior Nationals in Udaipur, bagging a silver. Soon he repeated his performance at the junior level, helping Bengal win the silver.

She said Indian coach Lim-Chae Woong was very much impressed by Rahul's performance during a national camp and wanted him to join the Tata Archery Academy.
"It's all because of Didi that I am here and have made a mark in archery. Because of her initiative, I could get into the Tata Archery Academy in 2003, a turning point in my career," Rahul gushed.

It was only after joining the academy that he had started winning, Rahul said.
"Obviously, it's a big help for me to have her in all the big tournaments. The coach is always there, but it's an added advantage when you have somebody from the family," Rahul said.

Rahul said they were looking forward to the two big events -- CWG and Asian Games -- this year."We really had very good exposure in the recent past. AT World Cup Stage IV, in the first round, we beat England, a Commonwealth country.

"Then we got the better of the USA, China and finally Japan who had defeated champions Korea en route to the title. Getting to 224 -- our highest score so far -- was the biggest achievement," Rahul signed off

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