After eye injury and surgery, Reena watches the Olympics squad

BENGALURU: A bad gym session has threatened to end her career, but after two eye surgeries and months after the game, the midfield player Reena is looking at the selection in Indian Women's Hockey Team For him Tokyo Olympics .

Reena, who was a regular feature in the Indian squad since her debut in 2017, fought her way through the challenging times with strong will and a tremendous support system.

I was using a stretch-band to do some simple flexibility exercise when the band snapped and hit my left eye. It happened so quickly that I had no time to react. At that time, little did I know that the next four months would be the worst phase of my life, recalled Reena.

She was part of the team that won the silver medal in the Asian Games 2018 and also played the FIH Women's World Cup in the same year. She was doing very well until the accident in 2019, which questioned her participation in the most important Olympic qualifier .

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Initially the doctor has said it will heal soon but even after a month when the pain was persistent, the doctor then advised surgery to rule out permanent damage to the retina. This news was devastating and all I could think of was whether I will ever play hockey again, said the 26-year-old Reena, who is from Chandigarh.

After a brief break, Reena returned to the national camp in July.

I was advised for two months of bed rest and when I returned to camp Coach Sjoerd spoke to me regularly to cheer me up. He was telling me about a player in the Netherlands who played hockey with only one eye vision.

Positive stories like these and the emotional support of my parents and some close friends outside of hockey kept me motivated.

When I held the club again, after almost three months, I knew I would do anything to return to the team and I am grateful to the coaching staff who supported me with the step-by-step return to full training and did not give up. any kind of pressure, he said.

To the surprise of many, Reena was available for FIH Olympic qualifier s selections, having made her comeback in the Test Event in Tokyo in August 2019.

She underwent another corrective surgery in December, but the danger was past by then.

I had a break on the Indian team quite late. I was around 24 years old when I debuted in India and my junior experience in India is minor, so next year I will do everything I can to prove myself worthy of a place in the Indian Olympic Squadron, he said.