Maan ki Baat: Judoka Tulika clinches silver at CWG

She was only three when her parents separated and a few years later her father was shot dead over business rivalry.
India's Tulika Maan won +78kg silver at the Commonwealth Games on Wednesday. (Photo | PTI)
India's Tulika Maan won +78kg silver at the Commonwealth Games on Wednesday. (Photo | PTI)

CHENNAI: Sometimes providence plays a different sport. Tulika Maan was not supposed to be there at the Commonwealth Games. Her weight category (+78kg) was not selected for the event. She had to deal with the fate that had been flirting with her destiny. It was cathartic when the 23-year-old judoka on Wednesday won a CWG silver medal.

Tulika was only three when her parents separated and then her father was shot dead over business rivalry a few years later. Her mother, Amrita Singh, who is now an assistant sub-inspector (ASI) with the Delhi Police, raised her alone. Given her round-the-clock job, she was forced to send Tulika to a hostel in Rewari. "I am in police, and because of my job I can never be sure when I will return home," mother Amrita, who is posted with Crime Branch, Fingerprint Bureau of Delhi Police, told this daily.

Time passed and Tulika started practising judo and later trained with coach Yashpal Solanki. However, her choice of sport was bound to burn a deep hole in her mother's pocket. "Most of the time, I sponsored her foreign trips. Those events were ranking tournaments and she had to compete there to earn points. My GPF (general provident fund) is already finished financing her trips," said the mother. Amrita still rues that she couldn't see her daughter grow up. "I was not there when she needed me the most."

With the Games round the corner, the weight category in which Tulika competes was not included in the six quotas (3 men and 3 women). After a long fight, Tulika's weight category was included and she cleared the selection trials. As fate would have it, she won silver/gold for India.

Earlier, Tulika beat Tracy Durhone of Mauritius by Ippon in the quarterfinal before performing the same move over New Zealand's Sydnee Andrews to book a place in the final. She, however, lost the final by Ippon to Sarah Adlington of Scotland to finish with silver. The medal is India's third in judo at the event. L Shushila Devi and Vijay Kumar had claimed a silver and a bronze in women's -48kg and men's -60kg respectively on Monday.

Ippon is a move in which a contestant throws his opponent on the mat with considerable force and speed so that he/she lands on his/her back. An ippon is also awarded when a contestant immobilizes his/her opponent with a grappling hold-down for 20 seconds, or when an opponent gives up.

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