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Sunday, August 1, 2021

Saikhom Mirabai Chanu wins Silver medal at Tokyo Olympics 2020

The Meitei people, are an ethnic group native to the state of Manipur in northeastern India. The Meitei primarily settled in the Imphal Valley region in modern-day Manipur, although a sizable population have settled in Assam, Tripura, Nagaland, Meghalaya, and Mizoram; with notable presence in the neighbouring countries of Myanmar and Bangladesh.    The origins of the Meitei people are not conclusively known. They follow Hinduism.  Their settlement on a fertile plain and valley regions of the Imphal River and the tributaries of the Manipur River enabled the Meitei to develop sophisticated wet rice cultivation systems, which supported a denser population and drove the development of a more complex political and social system than in adjacent hill areas.  A Meitei girl has done India proud today !!

Tokyo Olympics 2020  is underway after so many hurdles – today on day 1 - India’s Sumit Nagal began his campaign with a 6-4, 6-7 (6), 6-4 win over Uzbekistan’s Denis Istomin at the Ariake Tennis Park. Nagal’s win was the first for an Indian men’s singles tennis player at the Olympics since Leander Paes’ bronze medal-winning run at Atlanta 1996.

India begin Tokyo Olympics hockey campaign with win over New Zealand. Harmanpreet Singh, Rupinder Pal Singh scored for India in the Pool A match. Kane Russell and Stephen Jenness scored goals for New Zealand.

On April 17, India’s star weightlifter Saikhom Mirabai Chanu was on the verge of a most unpleasant moment of déjà vu. At the Asian Championship in Tashkent, the diminutive lifter from Manipur failed to nail a lift in the first two of her three attempts in the snatch. A third ‘no-lift’ would have ended Chanu’s medal hopes, a repeat of the horror show five years ago, at the Rio Olympics, where she crashed out after failing to lift the weight in any of her three attempts in the clean and jerk category. But Chanu is not someone who repeats mistakes. In her final attempt, she lifted 86kg and then went on to create a world record by lifting an incredible 119kg in the clean and jerk. The combined total of 205kg earned her a bronze medal and a ticket to Tokyo.

She was hogging limelight as the focus was on her   high medal-winning chances at the Tokyo Olympics, as  the Indian hopes to exorcise the ghosts of a disappointing Rio Games and write a new chapter in the country's weightlifting history. Competing in the 49kg category, Chanu was being considered a sure shot medal prospect for India as her personal best of 205kg is only second to China's Hou Zhihui's effort of 213kg in the eight-woman field.

The happy news is she has won a Silver medal in Olympics today. Saikhom Mirabai Chanu  has  won a silver medal at Tokyo Olympics in women's 49 kg, thereby bringing India its first medal in the event. A regular presence in international events since 2014 in the 48 kg category, Chanu has won the World Championships and multiple medals at the Commonwealth Games. She was awarded the Padma Shri by the Government of India for her contributions to the sport. She was awarded Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna awards by the Government of India for year 2018.

Chanu had won the silver medal in the women's 48 kg weight class at the 2014 Commonwealth Games, Glasgow; she went on to break the games record en route to the gold medal at the 2018 edition of the event held in Gold Coast. Her biggest achievement came in 2017, when she won the gold medal at World Weightlifting Championships held in Anaheim, United States. She won a Silver Medal and India's 1st Olympic Medal at the Tokyo Olympics

Saikhom Mirabai Chanu was born on 8 August 1994 in Nongpok Kakching, Imphal, Manipur, to a Meitei Hindu family. Her family identified her strength from an early age when she was just 12.   Chanu is now in news for winning the first medal for India at Tokyo.   Karnam Malleswari was the only Indian weightlifter to have won an Olympic medal, a bronze in the 69kg category at the 2000 Sydney Games.

A confident Mirabai entered the competition with the highest entry weight of 210kg, five kilograms more than her personal best, followed by Zhihui (205kg), who had previously lifted 213kg (96g+117kg) at the Asian championship. Mirabai, in her first attempt in snatch, lifted 84kg, then settled with 87kg in her second attempt. She failed her final attempt (89kg). China's Hou Zhihui started on 88kg, then created a new Olympics record with a lift of 94kg, which is two kgs below her own world record.

Thus, the Indian lifter entered the clean & jerk with a deficit of seven kgs, to Zhihui. United States' Elizabeth Jordan Delacruz finished third with 86 kg, ahead of Indonesia's Windy Cantika Aisah, who lifted 84 kg. In clean & jerk, Mirabai, who holds the world record, could manage only 115k kgs for a total of 202 kgs.

Well done and congratulations to our silver lady Saikhom Mirabai Chanu

The not so good news from Tokyo is that the Indian archery mixed team of Deepika Kumari and Pravin Jadhav was knocked out in the quarter-final at the Tokyo Olympics on Saturday. The Indian duo lost 6-2 to the Korean pair of An San and Kim Je Deok at the Yumenoshima Park Archery Field. The top-seeded Koreans dominated from the beginning, winning the first set 35-32 as the Indians shot two 8s and a low 7.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
24th July 2021. 

1 comment:

  1. Very happy!Well done and congratulations to our silver lady Saikhom Mirabai Chanu