Most people would remember Jayanta Talukdar who made history in 2006 in the FITA Meteksen Archery World Cup upon becoming the first Indian to win a gold medal in the event. Eight years later, he is still considered one of the primary faces of Archery in India. For a 29-year old, he has achieved quite a lot of extraordinary milestones which set him apart.
Beginning and Success at National Level
Born on March 2nd, 1986 in Guwahati, he was not even aware of the sport until he was spotted by the selectors of a Talent Hunt Trial in 2000. He was picked for his good physique and was asked to come for a trial in Jamshedpur the same year. Despite never having picked up a bow in his life, he finished in the top 50 at the camp and soon began training at the prestigious Tata Archery Academy at fourteen. Soon he was selected in the Junior National Archery team.
In 2005, Jayanta came under limelight when at the age of eighteen and quite early in his career, he overthrew the big guns at the 25th Senior National Archery Championship held in Ernakulum. Consequently, he became the new Senior National Champion in the individual Recurve category. He won the same title again the next year in Kolkata.
He made his international debut in 2003 in the Asian Championship, held in Yangon where the Indian team clinched the silver medal. The team repeated their silver-winning performance again in the same event in 2005 in New Delhi. In 2004, he was a member of the Indian team that bagged the silver medal at the Junior World Championships in Lilleshall, Great Britain. Jayanta was the highest scorer for the team. In the 2004 Athens Olympics, he finished at the 11th place in the Team event.
In 2005, he was a part of the Indian team which grabbed the silver medal at the World Championship in Madrid. In the same tournament, he was declared the best Indian performer. He won a Gold medal in the South Asian Games, Colombo in 2006.
2006 brought the highest point in Jayanta’s career when he won the Gold Medal at the FITA Metesken Archery World Cup tournament that took place at Porec, Croatia. He created history by becoming the first Indian to have achieved this feat. He defeated Swedish archer Magnus Petersson in the final round and won by 108-105.
In the New Delhi Commonwealth Games in 2010, he bagged the bronze medal in the individual event. Later that year, he won a bronze again in the Team event at the Asian Games in China. He could not move beyond the quarter final stage in the 2014 Commonwealth Games but his future certainly looks bright.