Want To Meet Sachin Tendulkar, Show Him My Medal: Bhavinaben Patel To NDTV
Bhavinaben Patel, who won silver at the Tokyo Paralympics, said Sachin Tendulkar has inspired her a lot and she wants to meet him for more motivation.
- Bhavinaben Patel said that Sachin Tendulkar has been a big inspiration
- She said she wants to meet him once and show him her silver medal
- Bhavinaben Patel won silver in table tennis at Tokyo Paralympics
Bhavinaben Patel became India's most successful para table tennis player by winning a silver medal at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics. She lost the gold medal match but through her efforts in the maiden Paralympic Games, she has earned the epithet, 'Giant Killer'. A prolific Bhavina Patel went onto beat several top ranked players in her field to win the silver medal. Bhavina, who started playing the sport seriously nearly two decades back, said that she has been motivated by legendary cricketer Sachin Tendulkar's achievements over his long career. He is her idol and she wants to show him the medal when back.
"I have always been inspired by Sachin Tendulkar. I want to see him with my own eyes and i want to soak in all the motivational speeches from him that will give me even more confidence," Bhavinaben Patel told NDTV.
Bhavina won a Para Asian Games silver in 2018 in doubles and now a silver at the Paralympics. What has made her an improved player over the last 3 years?
She pointed to her mental strengths.
"Meditation is my strength. Table tennis is such a game, that it gets over in 10-15 minutes. This is world's second fastest game. Hence, I control my mind through meditation, it helps me focus," she said.
Perhaps that has helped her emerge as a giant killer too. Beating the Chinese players in a game they are regarded as the strongest in, Bhavinaben had to dig deep into her reserves and technical nuances.
"Everyone is scared of playing with the Chinese, I was a bit nervous. I have beaten them before. I think whoever is in front of you, you need to give your 100 per cent. My coach taught me how to play with players and move them with my body. "
She had lost her opening match of the Paralympics campaign to Zhou Ying, but steadily came back into the tournament, as deep as the gold medal match.
She said that the next match against Great Britain's Megan Shackleton was her turning point.
"My turning point was the match against the Great Britain player," she said.
"I had studied Great Britain's match before. I implemented my plans that my coach taught me," she added.
"My victory over Great Britain instilled confidence in me that, 'yes, I can do it'."
Bhavina's coach did not travel with her but was virtually by her side through the tournament, discussing strategies and techniques. She admits that having coach Lalan Doshi in Tokyo may have made a difference.