A dream doesn’t conjure into reality simply by dreaming, it takes sweat, determination and hard work. These lines echo in every athlete’s mind when they represent the country in a sport. It was no different for the 18-year-old Manisha Keer who bagged the silver medal in shooting at the ISSF World Championship at Changwon in South Korea. 

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When Manisha was 12 her routine was to regularly accompany her father, Kailash Keer, a fisherman, to Bhopal’s Upper Lake. The father and daughter duo would fish, together after which the catch would be taken to the local market for sale. Growing up in one of the worst economic conditions, life was never all golden spoon for her.

Raising seven kids was quite a challenge, shares Kailash, in an interview with The Times of India. He told the publication, “I have seven children, including four daughters. As a fisherman, I barely make enough to feed my family. Forget sports, it was not even possible to send my children to school.” Manisha had a great experience visiting the Madhya Pradesh State Shooting Academy with her elder sister Soniya. Luckily their visit coincided with shotgun trials at the academy.

When Manisha was watching the trials, Olympian Mansher Singh approached her and asked her to give it a shot. With no practice, Manisha hit the target in her first shot. Well, the rest was history. Since that moment Manish has been training very hard. At the recently concluded event in South Korea, Manisha finished with 41 points and thus equalled the Junior Record in Trap for women.

An elated Kailash told The Times of India, “I don’t know the first thing about shooting. All I know is that she is bringing glory and she’s happy.” Sports Minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore also applauded Manisha’s achievement in a tweet, “Our young shooting champions are making the country proud at ISSF Shooting World Championship in Changwon.”

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