Jaspal Rana to train Manu Bhaker again, two years after bitter split
Legendary shooter and now coach Jaspal Rana is back as the mentor of Manu Bhaker, two years after a bitter split with the latter, that had created a stir in the sporting fraternity. The split had happened in the run-up to the 2021 Olympics, where the two had publicly expressed their views.
"Yes, I will be pairing (up) with Manu Bhaker and (will) train her. It's confirmed. It's between me and Manu; I don't need any permission from anyone for that. I will be coaching just Manu and not the entire Indian pistol team. I'll be her coach," Jaspal told PTI.
"It is a long-term commitment. I will need to bring the champion out of her. Shooters like Manu Bhaker are technically sound normally, so I will focus a lot on the mental side of her game, apart from looking a bit into the technical aspect," he added.
He hinted that the patch-up happened after Manu approached him. "I think the credit goes to her. It (the talk was) between Manu and me; nobody else was involved in us deciding (to pair up again)," said Rana.
"I told her very clearly that what had happened in the past had happened, and I don't give a damn about it. What is done is done; the damage is done. But now, there will be a mutual understanding, and there will be no talk about the past. We'll just talk about shooting and the professional way of doing things," he said.
"I have started training her for the Asian Games (in Hangzhou) and World Championships. I have not committed anything," he said. "We are on the phone almost every day now, and I was in Delhi between the (ongoing) trials. It's not that difficult (to train her) because I know everything about her (technique). In five days, I can train her at my academy in Dehradun, and for five days, I can go to Delhi for training.
"So, it should not take long (for her) to be on track. But since a lot of damage has been done mentally and technically (in the last two years) so, let's see. She's a champion, and she will come out of it," opined Rana. "I've seen her shoot, and I've seen her doing things, and it makes me confident she will come out of it," said Rana of the 21-year-old Manu.
"The most important thing is whatever she is, that's a different story... but, yes, she is committed, and she is honest about moving forward for the coming competitions. I told her very clearly there would be no miracle or magic... that I come back and things would be on track."
"It will be a lot of hard work from her side and my side as well. And hopefully, if everything is positive from both sides, it will be much easier for us to move forward. Winning an Olympic quota is not that difficult for these guys, but getting to the podium there is very, very tough," added Rana.