Indian gymnast Dipa Karmakar missed a medal at the women’s individual vault event at Rio Olympics by a narrow margin. She finished fourth, missing the bronze medal by just 0.15 points.
23-year-old Dipa secured an average marking of 15.066 points and the Swiss gymnast Giulia Steingruber secured 15.216 points.
“It’s my bad luck that I missed the bronze medal by a few points. But no problem, I never expected this fourth place finish in my first Olympics….I’m fully satisfied with my performance. This is my highest score. But the medalists were better than me. Maybe, it was not my day,” a graceful Dipa said.
Dipa’s first vault was the less difficult ‘Tsukahara’ for which she collected 14.866 points.
In her second vault, the brave Tripura girl attempted the dangerous and way more difficult ‘Produnova’. The second vault was much better than the first and she was awarded 15.266.
For her risky ‘Produnova’, which has a difficulty of 7, Dipa was awarded 8.266 points for execution as she slipped up on a perfect landing.
After her vaults, Dipa was placed at the number two spot in the ranking but the next two gymnasts from Russia and US pushed her to the fourth spot.
America’s Simone Biles again grabbed the gold as she finished with 15.966 points. This was Biles’ third gold at Rio.
Second spot went to reigning vault world champion Maria Paseka of Russia who finished with an average of 15.253 points.
“…I don’t need to be disappointed I will give my best in Tokyo 2020,” a spirited Dipa said after the event.
Even though Dipa didn’t win a medal, she scripted history for her country. She delivered the best-ever performance by an Indian gymnast in the history of Olympics. And of course, she was the first Indian woman gymnast to have qualified for the Olympics and the first Indian to have made to any Olympics gymnastics finals.
Since independence, only 11 Indian male gymnasts have taken part in the Olympics.
The Tripura girl, had won a bronze in the 2014 Commonwealth Games now looks forward to the Tokoyo Olympics. She has resolved to win a gold there.
“..After four years, my target would be gold,” said Dipa brimming with confidence after her Olympic debut.
So far at Rio, India hasn’t won a single medal. Dipa’s performance was undoubtedly a big bright spot as she achieved new feats, representing India for the first time in new categories.
(With inputs from PTI)