Monday, 27 September, 2021

Will Ruman Shana get a 2nd chance?

Is this the end of Ruman Shana?, or it is the new beginning for the country’s latest sporting sensation after finishing his campaign in the ongoing 32nd Summer Olympics after conceding a close defeat in the second round of recurve men’s individual event at Yumenoshima Park Archery field on Tuesday.

In a country where cricketers are followed religiously and stardom looks to be a birthright for Shakib Al Hasan and co, Shana is surely a breath of fresh air considering to be a star in making and carrying the hope of a nation.

Certainly, there is no big hype around him as he isn’t expected to bring a medal in his maiden Olympic appearance, but he did manage to create a niche for him on the back of some noteworthy performance in the recent past.

So everyone was not astonished when he reached the second round after earning his first-ever win in the games by beating English archer Tom Hall in the day’s first round of elimination phase in the five sets by 7-3 set points.

High-flying Shana was brought down to earth by Canadian archer Crispin Duenas despite taking it to the match deciding fifth set, conceding a 26-25 points defeat (4-6 set points).

Bangladesh's failure in the Olympics is quite a regular story and it remained that way despite their neighbouring nation India had won multiple medals in Rio Olympics in 2016 and already earned a medal so far in the ongoing game.

India is reaping the benefit of long-term planning with their athletes and one does not have to look very far as the success of weightlifter Mirabai Chanu validates the fact.

Mirabai failed to earn a medal in the last Olympics but due to rigorous training coupled with support by their respective authorities, she managed to bag India’s first medal at Tokyo Olympics, grabbing a silver medal in the women’s 49kg.

Will Shana, who is eyeing to clinch a gold medal in 2028 Olympics, will get a similar opportunity that would not only provide him with a chance to run after his dream but also prepare him for Paris Olympics in 2024.

Bangladesh is taking part in Olympics games since 1984 but none of their athletes managed to cross the hit, let alone going further, though it was not the case with the leading archer of the country.

Unlike in the past, Shana is the first athlete from the country to take part in the Olympics on his merit after passing the selection processes and never looked out of sort in the games village crowded with some of the best athletes of the world.

Bangladesh hardly achieved any major success in the world meets and probably that is the major reason every activity related to developing an athlete gets stopped after they completing any games.

Bangladesh Olympic Association and Bangladesh Archery Federation need to draw a road map for Ruman Shana that will encourage him to reach his goal, in the long run, considering he had shown immense potential and have all the ingredients to go far in the future.

Bangladesh, whether, decides to take a leaf from other countries known to be following long-term plan remains to be seen, but one thing is clear if it is a case like it has been in the past certainly the road will end for Shana.