In a significant boost for Indian sports, the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports’ Mission Olympic Cell (MOC) has given the green light to Bhavani Devi’s proposal for an international training camp and participation in various fencing events. Bhavani, who recently made history by securing a Bronze Medal in the Women’s Sabre event at the Asian Championships, will continue her training at the Bauer Fencing Academy in Orleans, France.
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Bhavani’s remarkable achievement at the Asian Championships marked her as the first Indian to clinch a medal in the Women’s Sabre category. Reflecting on her growth, she mentioned, “I believe I’m a better fencer now than I was in Tokyo.” Her style and understanding of the sport have evolved significantly since her participation in the Tokyo Olympics, an event that contributed to her growth as an athlete.
The Ministry’s release stated that Bhavani’s training camp in France will span eight months and encompass various expenses such as training camp costs, airfare, accommodation, local transportation, physiotherapy sessions, training fees, licensing fees, and insurance costs.
Additionally, the MOC has also approved Bhavani’s proposal for multiple short-term training camps in countries like Georgia, Turkey, and Algeria. Her participation in various international fencing tournaments, including the Sabre World Cup in Algeria, Grand Prix events in France and Tunisia, and the Sabre World Cup in Lima, Peru, has also been endorsed. The government will cover her airfare, accommodation, local transportation charges, OPA (Out of Pocket Allowance), and visa fees under the Target Olympic Podium Scheme (TOPS) funding.
During the same meeting, the MOC also granted approval for other athletes’ proposals. Pistol shooter Anish’s request to train under foreign coach Ralf Schumann in Suhl, Germany, for a 15-day period received the nod. Furthermore, Table Tennis player Archana Kamath’s proposal to participate in the WTT Contender events in Rio De Janeiro, Almaty Kazakhstan, and Muscat Oman was also approved.
This move by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports signifies a continued commitment to nurturing and supporting Indian athletes on their journey to international excellence. Bhavani Devi’s achievements and her dedicated pursuit of excellence in fencing have now been met with well-deserved support, which is bound to inspire more athletes to reach for new heights in their respective disciplines.