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The champion who coaches champions
Till the other day , Bishweshwar Nandi had one key prize to show off -gymnastics ward Di pa Karmakar, who made waves in Indian sport with her path breaking feats. Now, he has another feat her in the cap -the Dronacharya award.
Only the second gymnastics coach to be conferred the country's most prestigious award in coaching, Nandi is synonymous with his protégé Dipa Karmakar, just as Devender Kumar Rathore was credited with the rise of Commonwealth Games and Asian Games bronze-medal winner Ashish Kumar.
Nandi was himself an accomplished gymnast in the 1980s, winning the national championship five times and representing India in the 1982 Asian Games. Having failed to win an international prize for his country , Nandi wants to fulfil his dream by guiding Dipa to glory despite the tall odds.
Not just Nandi, his wife Soma has also been an integral part in Dipa's development as a world-class gymnast. While Soma `discovered' Dipa, her husband has taken upon the task of polishing the raw diamond. “Yes, we have a family . But I have also come to terms with the fact that my husband has to be with Dipa, sometimes away from Tripura for months, to make her battle-ready . Gymnastics is our life and we are ready to sacrifice this much for the sake of the game,“ Soma maintained.