Indian sportswomen have been winning accolades for the country for years now. However, the last few months have seen them shine like never before! Be it in the Olympics Games, Common Wealth Games or Asian Games, they have come out at the top and made India proud.
From athletics to sports like wrestling and boxing, women like Hima Das, Dutee Chand and Vinesh Phogat among others have won gold, leading the nation to the skies.
This National Sports Day, we’re celebrating the women in sports who have excelled at the global stage, inspiring others to follow their footsteps! Read on to see how.
1. Hima Das – Athletics
This athlete has become the rising star of India at a very young age. She won a gold medal at the 2018 Asian Games and holds the current national record for 400 meters sprint at 50.79 seconds. She won five gold medals at different meets in Europe earlier in July this year, including the Poznan Athletics Grand Prix and the Tabor Athletics Meet.
Popularly called the Dhing Express, she was given the Arjuna Award in 2018, and was also appointed Assam’s brand ambassador for sports.
2. Dutee Chand – Athletics
Ace national sprinter Dutee Chand recently won a gold medal at the World Universiade in the 100m category. She received ₹3 crore from the Government of Orissa in 2018 for winning silver medals at the Asian Games.
She also became the first sportsperson in India to publicly come out as gay, encouraging others to accept one’s sexuality, and leading the conversation on LGBTQIA+ rights forward.
3. Manasi Joshi – Para-badminton
This badminton player, competed in the Para World Badminton Championship earlier this month in the SL3 category, and won gold for the country. SL3 is a para-badminton category in which players are impaired in one or both lower limbs and have poor walking or running balance.
Losing her left leg in 2011, when she was hit by a truck, she re-learned how to walk using a prosthetic limb, and since then has won medals at different matches globally.
4. Mary Kom – Boxing
There would hardly be a person in India who hasn’t heard of Mary Kom. She has gone on to become the face of women’s boxing in the country. She is the only India boxer to become World Amateur Boxing champion for a record six times! She also won gold at the 2018 Commonwealth Games, becoming the first Indian woman to do so.
To add more feathers to her cap, the ace boxer is the recepient of Padma Bhushan, Padma Shri, Khel Ratna award and Arjuna Award. In 2014, Sanjay Leela Bhansali produced a biographical sports film starring Priyanka Chopra, chronicling her life.
5. Komalika Bari – Archery
Komalika Bari from Jharkand, won gold in the World Archery Youth Championships in Madrid earlier this month in the women’s cadet recurve category. The 17-year-old is the third Indian archer to hold the World Archery Championships title.
6. Vinesh Phogat – Wrestling
Vinesh Phogat won gold at the 2018 Asian Games, in the 50kg freestyle category. Recepient of the Arjuna Award and Padma Shri, she is the first Indian woman to win gold in both the Commonwealth Games as well as the Asian Games.
The cousin of Indian wrestlers Geeta Phogat and Babita Kumari, bagged gold medals at the Yasar Dogu International and the Poland Open wrestling tournament earlier this year.
7. Saikhom Mirabai Chanu – Weightlifting
Hailing from Imphal in Manipur, Indian weightlifter Mirabai Chanu lifted 86kg in Snatch and 110kg in Clean and Jerk to win the first gold medal for the country in the Commonwealth Games in 2018.
In 2018, she was awarded the Rajiv Ratna Khel Ratna and the Padma Shri by the Government of India.
8. P. V. Sindhu – Badminton
Earlier this week, ace badminton player P. V. Sindhu won a gold medal at the World Championships, becoming the first Indian woman to do so. She is the second woman to win five medals at the competition in all, including 2 silver and 2 bronze medals.
Sindhu made the Forbes’ list of Highest-Paid Female Athletes in 2018 and 2019, and has been awarded the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna and the Padma Shri.
Who is your sports inspiration? We’d love to know. Please share with us in the comments below!
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