Surf’s Up! 16-Yr-Old Tanvi Represents India in Fiji

At the tender age of 8 years, Tanvi Jagdish from Mangaluru, decided that she wanted to do something remarkable in Surfing. Since then, she battled every obstacle that came her way. Now, at the age of 16, Tanvi has made an unlikely, but proud entry into the Fiji World Championship where she is going to represent India for the very first time.

The Surfing Federation of India (SFI) announced the entry of Team India in the stand up paddle (SUP) category in the 2016 Fiji World Championship, which started on November 12 and will end on November 20. Sekar Patchai (26) of Covelong Surf School, Chennai, has been selected to compete in the men’s category in SUP from India.

Tanvi is the first woman surfer from India to participate at the international surfing event.

“This is a first for Team India to participate in the world championship in stand-up paddling. Both athletes will take part in two disciplines viz. SUP racing technical and SUP racing distance in the tough conditions that Fiji is known for. Both have worked very hard over the years to consistently win national SUP championships and are ranked No. 1 in their categories. This opportunity of representing India at the highest level will enhance their skills and motivation to do well in the coming years,” said Rammohan Paranjape, vice-president, Surfing Federation of India. “We thank deputy commissioner of Dakshina Kannada K G Jagadeesha for his support as well as the Karnataka Bank, HPCL, Fiji Tourism, Mantra Surf Club and individual donors who have supported Tanvi Jagadish,” he added, as reported by TOI.

To turn her childhood dream into reality, Tanvi kept training hard. In her interview with SUP racer, Tanvi said, “For a girl to become tanned and wear shorts while paddling was not at all okay within my society. But I faced this without arguing because I knew what I was doing was right. I seriously worked out my priorities.”

Tanvi clinched the first position in All Cargo India Open of Surfing, thus making her way to the Fiji World Championship.

In her impassioned plea in Women For One, Tanvi requested people for financial and emotional support saying that “we should stop being judgemental about who can or cannot take part in Surfing and SUP, instead we all should rise above the stereotype and lend support to those who intend to make surfing a lifetime sport”.

Karnataka Bank’s managing director and CEO P Jayaram Bhat announced that the bank has decided to sponsor Tanvi’s travel expenses. Tanvi looks forward to winning the SUP race at the Fiji World Championship and we will certainly be cheering her on from afar!