Indian pistol shooter Heena Sidhu has mentioned that the gold medal she had won at the 2013 ISSF World Cup final was a pleasant surprise for her even though she was performing well in the run-up to the event.
Heena Sidhu shared insights about her glorious shooting career during an exclusive interaction with Shanivi Sadana on Sportskeeda Live.
On being asked about her feelings on becoming the first Indian pistol shooter to win a gold medal in an ISSF World Cup final, Heena Sidhu responded that she was also pleasantly surprised by the achievement.
"Yes, it happened in 2013. It was also the match where I made the World record. It was sort of out of the blue for me."
She reasoned that although she had been performing well in the training sessions prior to the event, it was great to achieve that distinction and that too with a world record to boot.
"I was definitely doing well in training but to actually go and deliver a world record performance and come out with of course the Gold, that is the first for an Indian pistol shooter to get a gold medal in a World Cup final."
The two-time gold medalist at the Commonwealth Games observed that she had tried to improve her performances as her career went along with the Olympic medal as probably the only piece of silverware missing from her list of achievements.
"Slowly over the years I have tried to improve my medals and improve my performance. So except the Olympic I have probably most of the medals that are to achieve."
Heena Sidhu on missing out on a medal at the Rio Olympics
Heena Sidhu was further asked if there was any particular reason for her failure to win a medal at the 2016 Rio Olympics. The 31-year old responded that she should have probably followed a different routine before the Games, rather than participating in too many preparatory events.
"The lead up to Rio is something I should have done differently. Two-three months before the Games, I was going for a lot of matches."
Heena Sidhu elaborated that she had participated in those matches to get some practice in pressure situations, something which was different from her regular routine.
"I thought if I have enough match exposure I would know how to deal with the pressure, how to deal with the match. I was trying things differently which I shouldn't have done. I went too far to try to do well."
Heena Sidhu signed off by stating that although her performance at the Rio Olympics was not that bad, she would have definitely done better if she had stuck to her usual mode of preparations rather than trying too hard.
"That's where I made the mistake. If I had just stuck with my way of working and not pushing myself too hard, my performance definitely would have been better. It wasn't a really bad performance but definitely it could have been better."
Heena Sidhu had participated in the women's 10 metre air pistol and 25 metre pistol events at the 2016 Rio Olympics. She missed out on reaching the finals of both the events, finishing fourteenth and twentieth respectively in the two events.