Indian gymnast Patra eyes Paris 2024 Olympics
DOHA (QAT) AGU Office: For Indian gymnast Rakesh Patra, qualifying for the Paris 2024 Olympics remains a dream as he sets out on a comeback trail following a shoulder surgery last month.
The 28-year-old missed Rio 2016 by a whisker, with only the top 24 in the world rankings qualifying and the rings specialist sitting in 25th after a strong 2015 World Championships in Glasgow.
Following a fourth-place finish at the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games, a shoulder injury last year left the Indian with a damaged labrum which ultimately required surgery.
“I tried to control it to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics first, but my shoulder was in such bad shape that I couldn’t even lift my hand,” Patra told Olympic Channel. “It was totally dead and my last option was to get surgery done. I did not think about the Olympics then.”
Patra was operated on in Mumbai in January, having last competed at the 2019 World Cup in Slovenia and Croatia in May.
Now with only an outside chance of qualifying for Tokyo 2020, which has been postponed to next year, Patra is eyeing Paris 2024 to make his Olympic debut, even if he will be 32 at the time of the competition.
“I agree that the body slows down a bit, we are in top form between the age of 18 and 25,” he added.