Rio 2016 – A new World!!

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Hello one and all!

I have completed my series of posts on our Olympic Heroes. Do read Olympic Heroes of India to know more about our champions.

Well… Rio Olympic 2016 has started.  The event is going to happen from 5th August till 21st of August 2016. Over 11000 athletes from 205 countries came together at the opening ceremony.

This time we have 120 sports personas representing our country at the Olympics. Do cheer our medal hopes Jitu Rai, Abhinav Bindra, Gagan Narang, Yogeshwar Dutt, Saina Nehwal, P V Sindhu and many others.

I wish all the best to our Men and Women’s Hockey Team.

Come on India!!

 

Yogi aka Manish Pahalwan – Yogeshwar Dutt!

“Abhi nahin to kabhi nahin (it is now or never)!”

-Yogeshwar Dutt

Hello Everyone!

Now I present our 12th Olympian – wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt!! Do read my first post on Olympic Heroes of India.

Yogeshwar won bronze medal at London Olympics in Men’s 60kg freestyle category wrestling. He is only the third Indian wrestler after Khashaba Dadasaheb Jadhav and Sushil Kumar to win an Olympic medal. Jadhav had won Bronze medal in 1952 Helsinki. Sushil Kumar had won bronze in 2008 Beijing Games and silver in 2012 London Games.

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As It Happened
August 11, 2012 London

Yogeshwar Dutt defeated Masoud Esmaeilpoorjouybari of Iran 3-1 in the second repechage round to book a place in the Bronze medal bout. In the Bronze medal match, Yogeshwar put up a spirited performance despite losing the first period 1-0. Yogeshwar, who was struggling to barely open his right eye, came back strongly in the second period winning it 1-0. Realizing that Bronze medal was almost in reach, there was no stopping for Yogeshwar in the third and the final period that he won 6-0. Dutt showed one of his best performances against North Korean to win the Bronze medal at the ExCel Arena, which was packed with Indian supporters. What a temperament and dedication to win this match!

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Life of The Champion

Born in Haryana, Dutt started wrestling at the young age of 8 years. Balraj Pehlwan was his source of inspiration. Sushil kumar multiple Olympics medal winner is close friend of Yogeshwar Dutt. They are friends since childhood.

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At Beijing Olympics in 2008, despite being so close to the medal Dutt could not win a medal. That was disappointing and frustrating. He did go through a lot of struggle. He spent time in South Africa nursing a critical ligament injury. Then he had a back injury. People started writing him off. This ironed will man kept going and created a history at the London Olympics winning a medal for India!

His Rio Olympics match is on 21 August 2016.

Thus concludes my series on our individual Olympic champions till date.

Champion of Champions – Mary Kom!

“Like every other athlete, I always dreamt of playing at the Olympics, and it feels really good to see that dream materialize.”

-Mary Kom

Not many people know that Mary is a five-time world champion. Everybody started noticing her after the London Olympics. When Priyanka Chopra portrayed her in a title role, Mary has become a household name. So here is our 11th Olympian – Mary Kom!

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As It Happened
Wednesday, August 8, 2012, London

Mary Kom created history by becoming the country’s first woman boxer to win a medal at the Olympics. She finished with a Bronze in the 51 kg event at the London Games.  Mary Kom lost to local favorite Nicola Adams by 6-11. However, she stood third in the competition and garnered an Olympic Bronze medal.It was first time that women boxing was included in Olympics sports.

Life of The Champion

Mary has keen interest in athletics since childhood. She got interested in boxing and took up the sport at the age of 15. She was inspired by Dingko Singh, an Indian boxer who won the gold medal in the 1998 Asian games. Boxing is her passion. It is the fuel that keeps her driven at all time.

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The early days of her childhood were an extreme struggle with poverty. She had to help her parents in the fields, take care of her siblings, take care of the house and attend school. Despite being 5 time world champion, she was relatively unknown. It was Olympic medal that changed everything.

V for Vijay (Victory) – Vijay Kumar

Hello Everyone,

Today I present our 10th Olympian – Vijay Kumar! You can read more on Olympics and India in my earlier post Olympic Heroes of India.

“I have lots of medals but that Olympic medal was missing – now it is here.”

– Vijay Kumar

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archives.deccanchronicle.com

Vijay Kumar won the Silver medal at 2012 London Olympics in the individual 25 Meter Rapid Fire Pistol event.

As it happened
August 2, 2012, London

Vijay Kumar started with a bang, hitting the target all five times and kept himself in the hunt. After a perfect five out of five at the start, Kumar, found the target four times in the second and third round, but missed it twice in the fourth. He fought back well and shot four times in the next three rounds and assured himself of a Silver medal.

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www.insidethegames.biz

Life of The Champion

Vijay Kumar was born in a humble family based in a small village of Himachal Pradesh called Barsar. His father, Bankur Ram Sharma, was a man of poor means. To support the family Vijay Kumar joined the army. It was there he took up the shooting. He was serious about shooting right from the beginning. Army life is full of challenges. Kumar says that the firm grounding of army life helped him to work even harder and fulfill his aim of wining the medal. Kumar has been awarded with the Ati Vishisht Seva Medal (AVSM) by Indian Army after his splendid performance at the London Olympics.

Presently he is serving as Subedar Major in the Indian Army.

London Olympics was the first appearance of Vijay Kumar. He made it worthwhile by winning the Silver medal for India. Not only he has made our country proud but also set an example for young aspiring athletes.

 

Queen Of Indian Badminton – Saina Nehwal!

“Nothing bigger than standing on the Olympic podium… It still seems like a dream, it is unbelievable.”

-Saina Nehwal

Hello Everyone!

I am back with our 9th individual Olympic champion. Do read my first post on Olympic Heroes of India.

well… over the years Saina has proved her metal and she has consistently and remarkably done wonders in Badminton. Watching her play  especially against Chinese players is always a treat for me.

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sportsrediscovered.com

As It Happened
Saturday August 4, 2012, London

Saina won the women’s singles Bronze medal badminton match against China’s Wang Xin at the 2012 Olympics, Saturday, August 4, 2012, in London. Wang conceded the Bronze to Saina retiring hurt after she won the first game 21-18 and up in the second 1-0.

Life Of The Champion

Saina was associated with badminton since birth as both of her parents are Badminton players and champions. Born in Hisar, Haryana Saina moved to many places before shifting to Hyderabad. Now her base is Bangalore city.
Saina started with no sponsorship. There was the huge cost for kit, shoes, rackets and other equipment. She had to travel a long distance for training. There was a constant fear of failure and the lack of sponsorship did not help either. Initially she lost way too many matches. All this hardship payed of and she rose to the top of her game.

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www.imagetown.in

With great coaches and mentors as Pullela Gopichand and Vijay Kumar, she managed to break the Chinese dominance. With never say die-attitude, grueling hard work, She became the first ever Indian to win an Olympic medal in Badminton sport. She has won many Super series Badminton titles as well. She has been awarded with Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna – the highest sports award of our country.

Truly the queen of Indian Badminton!

Her first match in Rio Olympics is on 11th of August 2016.

Gun for Glory – Gagan Narang!

“Olympics is everyone’s dream. I am glad. I am now an Olympic medallist.”

-Gagan Narang

Hello Everyone!

I am back with 8th individual Olympic champion of India. Gagan Narang is a shooter who won the Bronze medal in 10 meter air rifle shooting sport at London Olympics in 2012.

As It Happened
July 30 2012, London

Gagan Narang was placed third in the qualifying round with a score of 598. In the final round, he started with a bang but he was off target with the second shot which fetched him a score of 9.7. That was a blow but Gagan quickly got over with the previous shot and for next four shots he was back with the scores of 10.6, 10.7, 10.4 and 10.6. Thus total score of Gagan’s was 701.1 and thus the bronze medal in shooting for 10 meter air rifle. The silver medal went to Niccolo Campriani of Italy who scored 701.5. This simply shows shooting is such a terrific and precision oriented sport.

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img source firstpost.com
Life of The Champion

Gagan Narang was born in Chennai, later raised in Hyderabad. He touched the gun for the first time at the age of six for shooting down balloons at Chennai Marina Beach carnival. When kids of his age were picking up toy cars, he used to buy toy guns. There was a time when his parents had to sell off a plot of land so that he can buy a rifle for competitive tournaments. After that they stayed in a rented house for the next 15 years. This Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna awardee has made India proud in the world of shooters. Gagan not only has won Olympic Bronze but also shooting world cup Bronze as well.

Truly a Glorious gem!

 

An Incredible Pahalwan – Sushil Kumar

“Every day there should be an improvement.”

-Sushil Kumar

Hello Everyone,

I am back with our 7th Olympic winner Sushil Kumar – pahalwan and here is his story of fulfilling Olympic dream.

Moments of Glory

Sushil Kumar became the first Indian to win a wrestling medal at the Olympics after Khashaba Jadhav in Helsinki in 1952. He is the first Indian to win back to back individual Olympic medals. He won Bronze medal in the Men’s 66kg Freestyle Wrestling event at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and a Silver medal in 2012 London Olympics.

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image source www.hdwalle.com

As It Happened
Wednesday, August 20, 2008, Beijing China

Sushil Kumar defeated American Doug Schwab in the first round and Belarusian Albert Batyrov in the second. For Bronze medal match, Kumar beat Spiridonov 3:1, with scores of 2-1, 0-1, 2-0 in three rounds. Kumar disclosed that he had no masseur during the three bouts he won within a span of 70 minutes to take the Bronze. The team manager Kartar Singh who is a former Asian Games medallist acted as the masseur for him. Sushil fought bravely after vomiting and suffering dehydration following his semi-final match victory to Akzhurek Tanatarov of Kazakhstan. The final match was held within 3 hours after his semi-final victory.

Life Of The Champion

Sushil comes from a wrestling background, traditional wrestling grounds or ‘akhadas’ always fascinated him. Sushil competes in a sport of mud and mats. It is still considered as a de-glamorous sport. His cousin Sandeep, a local wrestling champion, encouraged him to take up wrestling. But since the family’s limited resources permitted only one of them to follow wrestling, so Sandeep had to quit. With a modest income, Sushil’s father, a DTC bus driver, took great pains to ensure that Sushil had no hardships in pursuing his wrestling career.

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image source www.saddahaq.com

Sushil who is also the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna (India’s highest sports person award) awardee attributes his strengths and inspiration to his parents. Truly he is an incredible Pahalwan with a great achievement!