Hyderabad boy wins two bronzes in roller skating, in the individual event and in pair with Avani Panchal.
His passion for skating began at the age of six and since then Anup Kumar Yama has not looked back.
It was hence a dream come true for the 26-year-old Hyderabad skater when he bagged a double bronze in the Guangzhou Asian Games.
Yama won the bronze in freestyle roller skating and then with Avani B Panchal (Visakhapatnam), finished third in the pairs event.
Yama totalled 244.2 points, ending up third behind Japan’s Shongo Nishiki (253.8) and Chinese Taipei’s Chen Cjia Yea (248.8) in the individual event. In the pairs event, Yama and Avani collected 222 points and were behind Yawen Lin and Yunqin Tan of China (245.4) and Tzu Hsia Weng and Li Hsin Chen (237.6).
“It was a close contest. We could have won the gold,’’ said a disappointed Yama from Guangzhou. The Indian skaters had landed in Guangzhou just two days before their event.
Yama learned skating from his father Veeresh Yama, who is himself a national coach.
“Since I was a skater myself and a coach, he got into skating from a young age. He took a liking to it and since has never looked back,’’ said a proud dad.
The Marredpally boy puts in hours of rigorous practice.
“He has never missed a practice session for the last 20 years,’’ said Yama senior. Yama, an MBA by learning, also won five gold, three silver and two bronze in the Asian Rollerskating Championship.
There has always been a competition between Indians, Chinese and Chinese Taipei skaters.
The last time they met at an Asian Championship, the Indians won the gold. “We were expecting a gold but unfortunately the other teams reached China two days before the meet. If they had reached 10 days earlier, it might have been a different story,’’ said 54-year-old Veeresh, a real estate businessman.
Yama garnered 123.6 on technical merit and 120.6 for artistic impression.
In the pairs event, there is lift apart from spin, jump and choreography. Yama and Avani, who are also national champs, collected 112.5 points on technical merit and 109.5 for artistic impression.
Yama, who practices at the Indira Gandhi rink in Domalguda has won over 50 national events starting from the age of 20.