Olympic gold not impossible: Shana

Staff Correspondent | Published: 00:00, Sep 17,2019


State minister for youth and sports Zahid Ahsan Russell greets Asin Cup gold medal winning archer Ruman Shana on his return from Philippines on Monday. — New Age photo

Asia Cup gold medallist archer Ruman Shana returned home from Philippines on Monday and now set his sights on winning a medal in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Shana defeated Shi Zhenqi of China by 7-3 set points to take the recurve men’s gold at the third leg of 2019 Asia Cup World Ranking Tournament in the Philippines on Friday.

The 24-year-old archer from Khulna won two more medals in the tournament, a silver medal with the recurve men’s team and a bronze with the recurve mixed team respectively.

‘Securing a gold medal at this level is a matter of pride for me. I bagged three medals and hope to continue this trend. I worked hard and played continuously. If I continue my hard work, I can hope to win a gold medal in Olympics. It’s possible,’ Shana told New Age on Monday.    

Shana, however, was well aware of the level of Olympics and wanted to use the next nine months before the Olympics begins in July, 2020, by taking part in six tournaments, one national and five internationals for best possible preparation for the mega event.

‘Asian level and Olympics level is different. First I have to prepare well. I have nine months for preparation. I must prepare myself likewise.

‘The more tournaments I play before the Olympics, it will be better for me.  I hope I will take part in six tournaments before Olympics.

‘I always set a target of reaching semi-finals in any tournament. I have SA Games in Nepal and my target is to secure a gold medal in one event out of six,’ he said.

The archer also termed archery as the number one game in the country now in terms of achievements, trumping even the most popular one, cricket.

‘Cricket is popular and at the top in terms of popularity. If we count the numbers of medals, I think archery is the number one game. It is a new game in Bangladesh, just 15 years, it will be popular gradually,’ he said.

Despite his success, Shana remained disheartened as he was yet to get any sponsorship commitment and didn’t receive any recognition from the high-ups of the country.

‘It would have been better if I got some support from a sponsor… though I brought some success for the country, I did not get any good commitment from federation or from others. Sometimes I feel frustrated and angry and feel like quitting the sport.’ 

‘If the future is not secure, why play the game. Prime minister congratulated Afif Hossain for his success against

Zimbabwe. It’s an inspiration for him. I fought against 92 archers for the success, but did not get at least one inspirational phone call from that level,’ he concluded.

Shana placed third at the 2019 World Archery Championships, winning the first medal for his country in the history of the event and qualifying a spot in the Olympics.

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