In peak shape, Seema Antil hopes to grab the spotlight at the Olympics

first_imgKrishna Poonia versus Seema Antil is not as hyped as many other rivalries in Indian sport. Yet, as D-day nears for the London Olympics opening ceremony, the tall Seema is looking confident.Almost shying away from the media at a party on Monday night, Seema is playing the quiet game. “Talk to my coach please,” she said when a couple of mediapersons approached her.”Insi miliye, yee mere husband hain,” she said again, trying to deflect the attention. However, after the pleasantries, it was time for Seema to talk.Having spent almost 10 months training in California, Seema says she has got stronger and is ready for the big day. The drug spectre has haunted her for long and now she knows it’s all about competing fair and square in the unpredictable weather of London.The small, light-red tilak on her forehead did suggest she has been praying hard and hopes to do well. But at an event as big as the Olympics, nothing is because of chance.”The time has come and I am ready. Nobody can now offer any excuse,” says Seema, looking quite relaxed.Having been through her share of lows as well, when she first tested positive for drugs, Seema is aware what it will be like in London.Seema looked surprised when she was asked how she was feeling.”I am feeling good sir,” said a shy Seema, almost refusing to move away from her husband who stood at attention. “I am in peak shape and no fitness worries,” she added as she again tried to engage her coach to be involved in the conversation.More questions followed, as she was asked if the focus on Krishna Poonia was upsetting her. “People probably don’t know me well but I’m happy to be away from limelight and recently threw 62.30 metres in a competition in UK,” she said.At the same time, Krishna had thrown just close to 61 metres.Seema’s own expectations are that on current form she is hoping to make the final. At this point, finally, coach Tony Ciarelly stepped in.Looking rugged and ready to talk, Ciarelly spoke of how Seema had worked hard. “Yeah, she has worked with me now for almost a year though it could have been longer,” he said.”In my view, the strongest thing about Seema is she works hard. I have been able to work on her technique and tact and she is able to hurl the discus freely. The weather in London may be unpredictable but if it gets slippery, I am confident Seema will still do well,” said coach Ciarelly.”Her fitness is good and she is fully aware of her body which any athlete should be,” he adds.So what is Seema capable of? “Let’s be honest, I’m looking at the finals. At least 4-5 girls are better than the two Indian girls Seema and Krishna who I saw for the first time last week.”It’s bright and sunny now but if the weather changes, count Seema in. She is capable of 64-65m… so you never know,” he said.Seema won bronze medal at the Commonwealth Games in New Delhi. This time, she is aware nothing can be left to chance.advertisementlast_img

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