'Was told we were selected for how we looked': Lawn bowls CWG gold medallist breaks down - WATCH
"We were very depressed. A lot of discussions happened about us. It was very demotivating," Rupa Rani Tirkey said.
If there was one clear surprise from India's campaign at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games 2022, it was with the lawn bowls team excelling themselves at the event, winning a rare gold medal in the women's four event while the men's fours team also picked up a silver.
However, in the aftermath of the win by the women's fours team consisting of Rupa Rani Tirkey, Pinki, Nayanmoni Saikia and Lovely Choubey - the reality and struggle that went behind getting the gold medal has struck as the women have opened up on what they had to go through to even reach that stage.
Appearing on 'Table Talk with Jo', Rupa Rani Tirkey mentioned how much struggle, and harassment they had to go through.
"We were very depressed. A lot of discussions happened about us. It was very demotivating," she mentions in the video, breaking down into tears, as she narrates the prices they had to pay to win the elusive gold by defeating powerhouses South Africa in the final.
"There was a lot of pressure on us. If we didn't return with a medal from the Games, then maybe there would have been no future of lawn bowls for us in the next edition," she continued.
Not only that, the quadruple team had to be subject to a lot of misogynistic comments as well.
"We were even told that we have been selected to the team because of how we looked," Lovely mentioned, unable to control her tears, on the show.
"We had something in us that's why we won a medal, no? Nobody will give us a medal by simply looking at our face," she quested.