C A Bhavani Devi

(SPEAKER)

Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

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C. A. Bhavani Devi is an Indian sabre(fencer), who is the first Indian fencer to ever qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games. Bhavani made history by winning the gold medals in sabre(fencing) at the Senior Commonwealth Fencing Championship 2018 in Canberra, Australia, at the 2014 Tuscany Cup, Italy, and at the Commonwealth Championship, Jersey, in 2012. She was also supported by the Rahul Dravid Athlete Mentorship Programme under GoSports Foundation, Sports association in Bengaluru, Karnataka. Bhavani Devi while playing fencing.In an interview, Bhavani said that her mother was her greatest inspiration to pursue her fencing career. She further added that her mother was very supportive and worked very hard to arrange money to make Bhavani participate in National tournaments. She revealed, My mother influenced me the most in my fencing career. She has been supportive and has faced hardships to fulfil my dreams. She worked arduous to find sponsors and gather funds from the government for me to participate in international tournaments..In 2004, Bhavani started fencing baby steps when she was studying at Muruga Dhanushkodi Girls Higher Secondary School. In an interview, Bhavani said that her school gave her six sports options to choose from, including fencing, when she was in sixth class. She revealed the fact that all the other options were filled by the time she joined the school, and she was left with the option of fencing only. She narrated, When I joined class VI to the new school, they gave me six sport options including fencing. All the other options were filled by the time I joined and I was left with fencing. It sounded new to me and I was eager to try it. Many didnt even know that a sport called fencing exist and in India then. It was a very new sport, especially to Tamilnadu. The sport itself is an inspiration. It gives me happiness and motivates to be better every day. Bhavani Devi (right) with her elder sister while at school.

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C. A. Bhavani Devi is an Indian sabre(fencer), who is the first Indian fencer to ever qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games. Bhavani made history by winning the gold medals in sabre(fencing) at the Senior Commonwealth Fencing Championship 2018 in Canberra, Australia, at the 2014 Tuscany Cup, Italy, and at the Commonwealth Championship, Jersey, in 2012. She was also supported by the Rahul Dravid Athlete Mentorship Programme under GoSports Foundation, Sports association in Bengaluru, Karnataka. Bhavani Devi while playing fencing.In an interview, Bhavani said that her mother was her greatest inspiration to pursue her fencing career. She further added that her mother was very supportive and worked very hard to arrange money to make Bhavani participate in National tournaments. She revealed, My mother influenced me the most in my fencing career. She has been supportive and has faced hardships to fulfil my dreams. She worked arduous to find sponsors and gather funds from the government for me to participate in international tournaments..In 2004, Bhavani started fencing baby steps when she was studying at Muruga Dhanushkodi Girls Higher Secondary School. In an interview, Bhavani said that her school gave her six sports options to choose from, including fencing, when she was in sixth class. She revealed the fact that all the other options were filled by the time she joined the school, and she was left with the option of fencing only. She narrated, When I joined class VI to the new school, they gave me six sport options including fencing. All the other options were filled by the time I joined and I was left with fencing. It sounded new to me and I was eager to try it. Many didnt even know that a sport called fencing exist and in India then. It was a very new sport, especially to Tamilnadu. The sport itself is an inspiration. It gives me happiness and motivates to be better every day. Bhavani Devi (right) with her elder sister while at school.In her biography, Bhavani mentioned that she used her first electronic equipment to play the game, fencing when she participated in her first National event in 2007 until then she was practising with bamboo sticks. Initially, Bhavani received her fencing training under the hot sun, when other international players practised with their electronic swords at the indoor stadiums in south India. Bhavani revealed in her biography that she often borrowed swords from other players for practising as she couldnt afford to purchase an electric sword. In an interview, Bhavani revealed her sporting philosophy and said, Success wont come in a day. You have to be patient and continue to work hard. More importantly, you must crave and love your sport..In 2004, Bhavani began representing nationally in fencing at Madhya Pradesh. Soon, she got trained at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Chennai and started playing sabre professionally.In an interview, Bhavani explained her schedule when she first started her fencing sessions while at school. She further narrated that she sometimes missed the only bus to her training stadium, and she had to walk alone for a few kilometres. She said, I had to attend the sessions before and after school. So, Ill wake up early in the morning and catch the only bus from Washermanpet that has a stop in front of the stadium at Periyamet. Soon after school, Ill rush for the sessions again in the evening. I remember walking alone for a few kilometres in the night after I missed the only bus that comes near the stadium..When Bhavani was 12 years old, she won her first gold medal in Individual Sabre, Sub-junior Nationals at Chennai. The screenshot of Bhavani Deviss Instagram post (when she won her first gold medal in Individual Sabre at the age of 12).Bhavani joined the Sports Authority of India Centre in Thalassery, Kerala after completing her secondary education. In 2007, she participated in her first international tournament Cadet at Junior World Fencing Championship in Turkey, when she was 15 years old. The expenditure of travelling and buying the equipment for fencing was heavy for the Bhavanis family. Bhavanis mother arranged money to buy the fencing equipment from her relatives and friends. In an interview, Bhavani said, I missed a lot of international events as my family couldnt afford the travel expenses. Still, my mother was not ready to give up. She tried her level best to let me attend the event either by taking loans or borrowing money. Bhavani Devi with her parents.In an interview, Bhavani expressed her emotions that when she had to visit abroad for International championships, it was very hard for her to communicate in English. She added that she faced a lot of challenges when a lot of people in India asked her parents to stop their daughter to participate in games internationally. She spelt out, I had faced a lot of challenges in the initial days while travelling alone. I was not fluent in English then. Finding the pre-booked hotels and communicating with people was a tedious task. Also, a lot of people asked my parents to stop me from going alone to participate in international events but I was not ready to give up. C A Bhavani Devi in abroad.In 2015, Bhavani won two Bronze medals, one in the Under-23 Asian Championship organised at Mongolia in Ulaanbaatar and the other at the Flemish Open championship held in Belgium. On this win, Former Tamilnadu Chief Minister, J Jayalalithaa, gifted Bhavani a purse worth Rs 3 Lakh for her outstanding performance in both championships. After receiving this honour from CM, Bhavani said, I am very happy that the Chief Minister has provided the elite scheme scholarship until 2020. I can stay relaxed on financial issues but at the same time, I have the responsibility to utilise it in a smart way to achieve good results. Former Tamilnadu Chief Minister, J Jayalalithaa with Bhavani Devi and her parents while receiving an honour.

Performance Details

7

Off Stage Members

1

Performing Members

60-90 Min

Performance Duration

Can Travel

Nationwide

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