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"Performance more important than medal at the Olympics," says ace shooter Heena Sidhu

FEATURED COLUMNIST
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509   //    18 Mar 2016, 13:17 IST
One of India’s brightest medal prospects going into the Rio Olympics

At the Part Hotel in Central Delhi on Thursday, Genpact, a global leader in digitally-powered business process management and services, announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding with the Olympic Gold Quest (OGQ). The OGQ is a not-for-profit organization founded by sporting greats Prakash Padukone and Geet Sethi with the aim of helping Indian athletes to gun for gold at the Olympics. 

This partnership is a part of Genpact’s Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) endeavours and will form a crucial part of the company’s cause of supporting women in leadership across a spectrum of arenas beyond the corporate sector.

Present at the venue was ace shooter Heena Sidhu, who is one of India’s brightest medal prospects going into the Rio Olympics, and she spoke about her preparations for the Games and her expectations from the biggest sporting spectacle in the world.

Sidhu, who won the gold medal at the 2013 ISSF World Cup Finals in the 10m Air Pistol event, is also a world record holder in the same category and is on track in her preparations for the Games that begin in August this year. She expressed her delight at the initiative taken up by Genpact and said that this support will go a long way in helping athletes prepare for the greatest challenge of their lives.

“I am glad that Genpact has decided to partner OGQ in such a venture. I hope to make the most of this opportunity and give my best performance at the Olympics and in the process, inspire the upcoming generation of sportspersons in India,” said the former World No. 1.

I hope to see more women compete in the future: Sidhu

The shooter stressed the importance of giving her 100% and not focussing on the prize, saying that it is the entire journey and process that makes the Olympics special. “I guarantee that I will go out and give my best performance in Rio. Whether I win a medal or not will not make a huge difference, since I will be putting in the same amount of effort once the Games are over,” she said.

“Thinking about winning the medal will just add more pressure on me and it is something I most certainly don’t want. No one can guarantee a medal since the margins are very fine and that is why I just want to focus on my performance. If a medal comes along in the process, it’s just an icing on the cake,” said Sidhu when asked about her medal prospects.

As women empowerment and equality was the theme of the occasion, Sidhu also shed light on the struggles that women athletes have to undergo.

She said, “It is really hard for women athletes to perform and stay at the elite level. I am lucky as I have supporting parents and husband, but there are many other stories of women being forced to quit due to parental and societal pressure. The situation is changing for sure though, with such initiatives as well as athletes like Mary Kom and their stories coming into the limelight. It is a start and I hope to see more women compete in the future!”

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