Indian Olympian Pravin Jadhav is set to return to action at the 2021 Asian Archery Championship in Bangladesh, slated to run from November 13 to 19. It will be his first tournament since the maiden Olympic appearance at Tokyo 2020.
Jadhav was selected in the 16-member Indian archery squad after the selection trials in Jamshedpur on Monday. He is, in fact, the only Olympian in the squad and wants to help the men's recurve team clinch a podium spot at the continental event.
Apart from Jadhav, the men's recurve team consists of national champion Parth Salunkhe, runner-up Sukhchain Singh and Kapil. They will also take part in the individual men's recurve event.
"I want to win an individual medal and also bag a podium spot in the team event. I have changed my shooting technique a bit," Jadhav told Olympics.com. "I had just returned from my break (after Tokyo 2020) but I was not fully prepared for the National Championship or the 2021 Asian Archery Championship selection trials. But somehow I managed to earn a place in the squad."
The 2019 World Championships (team event) silver medallist has also tweaked his training in his bid to earn a double podium finish at the Asian Championship.
The Satara-based archer has increased the number of arrows he shoots in training from 200 to 350 to ensure that he hits the 9 to 10-pointer mark more consistently. He was one of the more consistent India archers at Tokyo 2020 and wants to continue improving that aspect.
"The schedule for my training will remain the same as before but the quantity of arrows that I will shoot during the practice has increased. I used to shoot around 200 arrows in the morning. That was my fixed pattern but now it has increased to at least 300 or 350 per day," Jadhav said.
"It will help me to have more control on my shooting. I believe if I gain this control then it will be easier for me to produce quality performances. But without any control it becomes difficult to produce consistent performance at big stages."
Jadhav, 25, also stressed on the importance of keeping a clear mind while taking a shot from the platform.
"It is important to have a strong mentality when we are standing at the platform and taking aim. Every archer is shooting from the platform but only those whose mental set is clear is scoring well but if one makes a mistake initially then their entire round could go wrong," he said.
Moreover, his experience from the Tokyo 2020, will also be duly tested at the continental event. He had made a second round-exit at the individual event and reached the quarter-finals in the team event at the Olympic Games.