Daijiworld Media Network – Mangaluru (ANK)
Mangaluru, Oct 22: Apeksha Fernandes bagged 3 gold and one silver in a national level swimming competition at Bengaluru.
Apeksha is the 16-year-old daughter of Bavlon and Shalet Fernandes and hails from Mangaluru. She is presently living in Mumbai and a student of Bunts Sangha's S M Shetty International School and Junior College, Powai. Apeksha trains under Dr Mohan Reddy at the IIT Bombay pool and the Hiranandani Forest club.
Apeksha took part in the junior nationals under the category group 1 under age group of 15-17 where she bagged four medals including three gold. She will next take part in senior nationals from October 26 to 29 at Basavanagudi in Bengaluru.
Apeksha was the junior national champion in U14 category in the year 2019 before the pandemic. In the ongoing 37th sub junior and 47th junior national aquatic championship held at Basavanagudi aquatic centre, Bengaluru, Apeksha took part and medalled in all 4 events.
Apeksha bagged three gold medals each in 200 meters individual medley, 50 meters breast stroke and 200 meters butterfly stroke, and a silver medal in 100 meters butterfly stroke. At present, she holds national record in 200 meters, 50 meters and 4x100 metres medley relay silver for team Maharashtra.
Speaking to Daijiworld, Apeksha’s mom Shalet said, “It is a remarkable achievement from Apeksha. Even we need to thank the principal of the school who has been very supportive throughout to keep it balanced between training and studies. With pools being closed in Maharashtra due to COVID restrictions, she was able to train well only in last 3 weeks before the nationals and beat her competitors who have been training in different states of India and abroad where the restrictions were eased out much earlier.
“Credit goes to the hard work and resilience by both Apeksha and her coach Dr Reddy and Ritesh. In India, balancing academics and sports is only possible when the school extends its support. Apeksha is grateful to the unconditional support and encouragement extended by her school principal Mildred Lobo and her team of teachers.
“Director Prof Subhasis Chaudhuri, deputy director of IIT Bombay, Prof Sudarshan and additional commissioner of municipal corporation of greater Mumbai Ashwini Bhide, and Iqbal Chahal, commissioner of Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation have also played a key role in her success by approving the necessary permissions and special dispensation to open the IIT pool for training adhering strictly to the COVID protocol,” says Shalet.