Who says age is a factor in sports? 39-year-old Rekha from Mysore has won two golds and a silver medal in her first Master Athletic Meet in Colombo recently. She managed to achieve a feat which could take a toll on any professional athlete. What’s more praiseworthy is that she has not had any professional training,

Her proud coach Ravi says she is also eyeing a gold in the hammer throw event in upcoming international athletic meets, including the world master athletic meet

You would be surprised to know that Rekha never planned to participate in any athletic competition. In fact, she has had the same daily routine for the last three years — to take her daughter for training at the University of Mysore athletic ground.

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However, while her daughter was undergoing training, the mother would also try out some moves. An old friend Saroja, a former national athlete, discovered Rekha’s throwing skills. She later introduced Rekha to coach Ravi, who offered her training in practice throwing, including hammer throw, shotput and discuss throw. Within a few months, Rekha showed impressive results and mastered the traits in all the three sports. Ravi then encouraged her to take part in the state master athletic meet. Thus began the journey of a mother making a mark at the world stage.

“I did not have any experience or professional training in athletics. It was Saroja who introduced me to coach Ravi, who in turn helped me sharpen my basic skills. Also, the encouragement and support I got from my husband Mahadeva Swamy and daughter Prajwala helped me excel in this sport. In days to come, I want to bring more laurels to the country and state, but I need more support and sponsors,” Rekha told TOI.

Rekha’s husband runs a small business, while she is into tailoring.

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During the state master athletic meet in Bengaluru, she won three medals, including one gold and two bronze. She secured gold in hammer throw and clinched bronze in shotput and discuss throw. As a result, she secured a berth in the nationals where she won bronze in hammer throw. Later, she got selected to represent the country in the throwing events.

In the international meet at Colombo, Rekha won gold in hammer and shotput events and bagged silver in discuss throw.

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Feature Image Credit: TOI

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