Special Olympics 2019: Celebrating The Indian Women Stars
The 2019 Special Olympics is currently going on in Abu Dhabi, and the Indian contingent has topped the medal tally with 50 gold, 63 silver and 75 bronze medals so far, in various events including roller skating, powerlifting and table tennis. India has sent a 378-strong contingent that is participating in the 15th edition of the Games. Let’s celebrate the women at the Games:
India has bagged a total of 188 medals at the ongoing Special Olympics World Games in Abu Dhabi.
Powerlifter Manali slays!
Nineteen-year-old powerlifter, Manali Manoj Shelke from Maharashtra won a gold in a combo of three in powerlifting and a bronze too.
Indian paddlers created history in table tennis with four gold and one silver medals. Three paddlers won medals in the women’s singles section on Sunday. Among them, Anu Chennekota is a debutante. The 18-year-old from Andhra Pradesh won her maiden Special Olympics World Games gold in the 16-21 years’ division-3 category.
“The others are bad, I’m good,” said the confident Anu after the triumphant feat on Sunday.
Sabita Yadav, from Goa, won a singles gold in the division-4 category and Reshma Shaikh claimed silver following a narrow loss to Sabita in the final. “My local coach Ritesh introduced me to table tennis and I used to travel nearly an hour every day to Panjim to play,” said Sabita, the daughter of a housemaid.
In a first, the table tennis team has won four gold medals at the World Games. “We have never had four TT golds at the World Games, this is our best result and we have the doubles coming up too,” said Victor Vaz, the National Sports Director of Special Olympics (SO) Bharat. “The best we’ve had before were two golds at the last Games in 2015.”
The elated Judo star
India’s Muskaan won gold in deadlifting, bagged a silver each in squat and bench press and a bronze as well. “Something in me kept pushing me forward against everyone’s wishes. I always had faith in Sports, her teachers and coaches,” Muskaan’s mother claimed.
Roller Skating all the way
Four silver medals were bagged by Santoshi Vijay Kauthankar from Goa in the female category.
Priya Prakash Gada from Maharashtra also won a silver in the 100 mt. Roller Skating event. She said, “I am missing my family and want to break the news to my parents myself. But now I want to focus on my next event.”
Hearing-impaired Players rejoice the joy of Sound
Rincy Biju and Jyothi A, hearing-impaired basketball players, have experienced the joy of sound for the first time. They covered the ‘Healthy Hearing’ process at the Abu Dhabi Exhibition Centre (ADNEC). “Both the girls haven’t stopped smiling since the time they have got the aids. They are very happy,” Sneha Shetye, the women’s basketball coach, told PTI.
Coming from the fishing community of Kerala, the 18-year-old Rincy and her twin sister had a congenital defect in their ears. While Rincy’s ears are disfigured and no treatment could able to make her happy, a year younger Jyothi was abandoned at birth and was brought up by a school for children with special needs.
India may have lost its basketball contest, but let’s cheer on for the gutsy girls.
In the 2017 edition of the Games, the special athletes had bagged a total of 73 medals. The closing ceremony of Special Olympics World Games is scheduled for March 21
Feature Image Credit: Firstpost