An athlete’s job is to perform. Awards and other things follow. These words prove her mettle and dedication with which she has already brought a lot of laurels for India. She is none other than Heena Sidhu, a 28-year-old girl from Punjab and the first one to reach at number one in world rankings by the International Shooting Sports Federation. She holds many records but as the queen of 10 m air pistol events, she is the Finals World record holder with a final score of 203.8.
“Don’t stop chasing your dreams, because dreams do come true” – Sachin Tendulkar
Personal life and Family Background
Heena was born on 29 August 1989 in Ludhiana, Punjab, India with a family background which already has a National Shooter, Rajbir Sidhu, her father. Her brother is also a shooter in the 10-meter air pistol event. With her uncle being gunsmith and gun customizer so such family background gave her enough reasons to take up shooting as a profession. However, a physical sport was a challenge for her initially. She was not sure about shooting and only considered it as a hobby only. Later with hard work and dedication, she started doing well in sports. She also received her Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS) degree in 2013.
She has been coached by Ronak Pandit, her husband as well. Ronak is himself a pistol shooter. He has also won the gold medal in the Men’s 25m Standard Pistol (Pairs) with Samaresh Jung at the 2006 Commonwealth Games. At present, both Ronak and Heena are living in Goregaon, Mumbai.
Uprising Career Graph
“There’s a ton of nerves for every fight I have been in; it doesn’t matter if it was my debut” – Holly Holm
Heena started her shooting career in 2006, participating in the national junior and senior teams. She won a silver medal at the ISSF World Cup in Beijing in 2009. After that, she participated in the Asian Games held in Guangzhou, China in 2010. She did not let this opportunity from her hands and grab a silver medal here as well. This becomes the career turning point for her and from there on, she had not let the hopes of 125 crore Indians down. Instead, she has been exceptionally well in all the years till now. Here is the few insight into her journey after 2010.
In the 2013 ISS World Cup, she won a Gold Medal. She became the first Indian Pistol Shooter to be ranked World No.1 in April 2014. On 24 October 2017, Heena and Jitu Rai won the 10m Air Pistol Mixed Team event gold at the Dr. Karni Singh Shooting Range. She continued her terrific form in 2017 winning gold in the women's 10m Air Pistol event at the Commonwealth Shooting Championships. This was the second gold in October for her this year.
Heena is a great inspiration for all the young talent trying to find their way to success. She and her husband Ronak are not only making India proud but also helping and pushing the young talent in the shooting. Heena has been so successful at a very young age only because of dedication, hard work, and work balance. We should also salute her zeal to see the national flag going up and the national anthem being played upon winning the medal which motivates her to give her best every day.
“Life’s like a movie, write your own ending. Keep believing, keep pretending”- Jim Henson