Apart from a national silver medal, Deepak’s biggest achievement has been winning the gold medal at the Indo-Nepal Taekwondo meet last May.

This Taekwondo Guinness record holder from Hyd hopes to win a medal at 2020 Olympics
news Sports Friday, June 22, 2018 - 15:33

In 2008, when the entire country celebrated Abhinav Bhindra’s gold medal at the Beijing Olympics, B Sai Deepak was just 12 years old.

Little did he know that this event would leave a mark in his life or as he puts it, “give me an aim in life” to win an Olympic medal for the country.

Ten years down the line, this Hyderabad boy is an engineering graduate as well as a Taekwondo state champion, who is currently pursuing an MBA.

Along the way he has also set two Guinness records – one in November 2017 for the most full contact elbow strike in 1 minute (142 strikes) and the second record in December 2017 for the most knee strikes in 3 minutes (205 strikes).

Talking to TNM from his home in Hyderabad, Deepak is a busy man shuttling between studies and Taekwondo practice.

“My goal is to represent India during the 2020 Olympics,” he says excitedly.

Deepak being felicitated by Telengana Sports and Youth Affairs minister, T. Padma Rao Goud. 

Deepak’s love for martial arts started way before Bindra’s Olympic gold medal. As a kid, he remembers sitting with his father and watching Bruce Lee movies, which was what sparked his interest in martial arts.

It was when he was in class 2 that his school got its first ever karate teacher, Master Subbu, who went on to become more like a “brother” than a mentor to Deepak. Under Master Subbu, who started the Shaolin temple in Hyderabad, little Deepak trained rigorously to obtain a karate brown belt and went on to win medals in interstate tournaments.

His dreams of winning an Olympic medal for the country crashed when he realised that karate isn’t an event in the world’s biggest sporting event. The youngster was quick in shifting to another martial art which was present in the Olympics – Taekwondo.

After learning the basics from Master Subbu, Deepak sought training from another world record holder and renowned Taekwondo expert, M Jayanth Reddy. Under his guidance, Deepak started to win medals in Taekwondo as well.

Apart from winning a silver medal in the national level, Deepak’s biggest achievement so far has been winning the gold medal at the Indo-Nepal Taekwondo meet last May.

But the road to the Olympics still seems a little too long for this young champion.

“I must win at least two medals in two grade-II events which has more than 60 countries participating in it,” Deepak says, adding that he is working hard with his coach to reach achieve the goal.

Even after all his achievements so far, the environment at his home has hardly been supportive.

“My parents are not too happy with me pursuing a career in Taekwondo,” says Deepak.

Things got worse when Deepak let go off an opportunity to work with Google after he got a placement during the campus recruitment process. Citing the reason that he wouldn’t be able to focus on his practice if he took up the job, the 22-year-old decided to apply for an MBA so as to not disappoint his parents as well as to continue his training along with his studies.

“Since I have classes only during the day, I get time to practice in the mornings and evenings,” says Deepak, whose day starts as early as 5 in the morning. 

Deepak follows a strict carbohydrate free diet along with a daily dose of milk and eggs.

“I was part of the NCC during my school days, so a disciplined routine comes naturally to me,” he says about his dedication and discipline.

Hungry to break records and win medals, Deepak finishes the call by saying that apart from winning an Olympic medal, he also wanted to be an inspiration for young athletes to take risks to follow their dreams.

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