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Sailing

Vishnu Saravanan looking to maintain 'fighter mentality' as he gears up for Paris

World no 17 Vishnu Saravanan has been training in Marseille for the past month, getting the taste of the Olympic venue.

Vishnu Saravanan looking to maintain fighter mentality as he gears up for Paris
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The Bridge Desk

Updated: 13 Jun 2024 5:16 AM GMT

A fearless approach helped then rookie Vishnu Saravanan at the Tokyo Olympics and the Indian sailor is ready to continue with the same mindset, unleashing his "fighter mentality" at the Paris Games next month.

The 25-year-old qualified for his second Olympics earlier this year at the ILCA 7 Men's World Championship in Australia.

"In Tokyo, I was a bit fearless. I just went 'OK, it's my first Olympics. I don't care about the results. So I just want to sail my best and see where I land up.' And I did ok," Saravanan told in a virtual press conference arranged by the Sports Authority of India on Tuesday.

Fighter mentality

The Asian Games bronze medalist said that he did not get overwhelmed by veteran sailors and their achievements, which gave him the confidence to do better against them.

"That fearlessness kind of taught me that you can perform much better by not putting yourself underneath some of the veteran sailors. You have to push that level of comfort where you can do your best and that's what I think I improved this season as well."

"Because I was more confident and I had more of kind of a fighter mentality where I wanted to beat these guys before they quit," he further commented.

Saravanan, ranked 17th in the world, has been training in Marseille for the past month, getting the taste of the Olympic venue alongside London 2012 silver medalist Pavlos Kontides of Cyprus and Rio and Tokyo silver medalist Tonči Stipanović of Croatia.

High-intensity training

"I've been lucky to be able to train in the Olympic waters and have such good training partners who won Olympic medals. I'm training with Pavlos Kontides and Tonči Stipanović, who've been in the top five for many years. So it's quite a solid group," he said.

"As I say, I am in the Army, but I've never been in the war. But when I'm sailing on water with these guys, it feels like I'm at war every day because the intensity is super high and my heart rate never goes below 150."

In the run-up to the Olympics, Saravanan competed at the Europa Cup that was in Palma in Spain along with a tournament in France, where he finished 11th.

On tough conditions in Paris

At the Paris Olympics, Saravanan knows that his biggest challenge will be navigating through the tough conditions.

"The biggest challenge would be the conditions because it's so random. If you see the map of Marseille, it's like a big bay, like marine drive, but with cliffs on the edges," he said.

It's very challenging because there's a lot of randomness in the movements of the wind, which is very unpredictable. I have to have a good start to have the tactical advantage," he concluded.

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