Nineteen-year-old Ashish Kumar made history by winning the men’s floor exercise gymnastics bronze medal in the Commonwealth Games at the Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium here on Thursday.
India had never won a medal in an event of such magnitude and Ashish made it a special day for his supporters.
In the individual apparatus men’s artistic competition, Ashish scored a 14.475 on the floor to finish at the third spot behind Australian Thomas Pichler (14.675) and Englishman Reiss Beckford (14.625).
Ashish, who was applauded by all his opponents, admitted that he was nervous while chasing his dream. “India had never won a medal (at any big stage). So, I was feeling the pressure,” he said.
Giving credit to the Indian coaching staff for his success, Ashish said things started to move positively in the last one year or so. “After (foreign coach) Vladimir Chertkov took over, he started the planning and training programme as followed by top international gymnasts. That has benefitted us,” said Ashish, who was part of the seventh-placed Indian team in the Melbourne CWG.