Guns, Roses, and the Love Story of Heena Sidhu


Guns, Roses, and the Love Story of Heena Sidhu

Illustration: Akshita Monga/Arré


t was a torpid day in June 2012 when Heena Sidhu received a call that changed her life. She had been picked to compete in the 10-metre air-pistol event at the London Olympics. Her first reaction: a fist pump and a lunge in the air. But her thrill soon turned to panic when she realised that the Games were only four months away. She was picked to compete in the world’s biggest sporting event ahead of Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, who had won silver at the 2004 Athens Olympics, and she was far from prepared.

As Heena, then a feisty 21-year-old, came to grips with the momentous news, she scrambled to get herself prepared, to figure out a stable training regime, get a team in place and find adequate funding. Temperament is everything for a shooter and even more important in the run-up to the Olympics. She knew she had to get the preparation course set and fast.