Olympian archer Atanu Das will use the National Games to take stock of his game ahead of a hectic 2023 calendar.
Atanu went through a dip in performance after the Tokyo Olympics and missed out on a berth in the Indian team for this year’s World Cups while competing in the newly formulated selection trials.
In recent times, Atanu trained at different places to find a good rhythm.
“I trained for a month at Pune and then did high-altitude training at Shillong for two-three months. Now I am training in Kolkata. At the National Games, I want to see where I am. I want to check myself before next year, which is packed with events – such as World Cups, Asian Games, World championships, Asian championships, several selection trials and the National championships,” Atanu told The Hindu.
“The training I have put in will help me face any kind of challenge.”
For Atanu, the National Games would serve as a countdown for the 2024 Paris Olympics. “You can say that (it’s a launch pad for the Olympics). We need to conduct our selection trials in a way so that we have the best team to qualify for the 2024 Olympics. In my opinion, performance in the ranking round and elimination round should get equal weightage.”
Atanu, who got a mixed team bronze in the 2015 Kerala National Games, looked forward to representing his home state West Bengal. “It’s a good feeling to represent your own state again after seven years. I will try to win medals in individual and mixed team events.
“This time the National Games is being promoted well by the Sports Authority of India (SAI) and the Sports Ministry. Its telecast will spread awareness about the Games,” said Atanu.