In news- India’s international sabre fencer Bhavani Devi has qualified for the Tokyo Olympics by virtue of improving her world ranking to 42.
- Hailing from Tamil Nadu, she has become the first ever Indian fencer to qualify for the Tokyo Olympic Games.
- She is also the first Indian fencer to win gold at an international event.
- Modern fencing is a combination of three disciplines: the epee, the sabre, and the foil.
- While in epee, the entire body is a valid target area, in sabre, the upper body becomes the target and in foil, only the torso can receive a strike.
- Weapons used in each also differ in terms of their make and flexibility.
- Bhavani specialises in sabre fencing, in which a typical competition lasts only 10 minutes.
- She currently trains under an athlete mentorship programme named after Indian cricketer Rahul Dravid.
- The eight-time national champion had failed to qualify for the Rio Olympics.
- However, by stepping up efforts she got trained in Italy under coach Nicola Zanotti before the COVID-19-induced shutdown halted the qualification process.