Connect with us

Sports

Sunil Singh And Arjun Singh: The Heartwarming Story Of Canoe Bronze Medal Winners In Asian Games

Published

on

Salam Sunil Singh, son of a fisherman, and Arjun Singh, born to a factory worker, grew up 2000km apart from each other. But there is a binding thread – an unending passion for water sports unhindered by their difficult formative years. The 24-year-old Sunil from Moirang, Manipur, and the 16-year-old Arjun, who grew up in Roorkee, combined that passion to land India a bronze medal in men’s double canoe 1000m event at the Asian Games on Tuesday, a first for the country since the 1994 event.

The duo clocked 3:53.329 seconds to finish third here in Asian Games. In the 1994 Hiroshima edition, India had bagged a bronze in the same event through Siji Sadanandan and Johnny Rommel.

For Sunil and Arjun, the medal was the culmination of the hard work they had put in despite the crushing odds in their lives.

“My father (Iboyaima Singh) is a fisherman and every morning and evening he would row his boat out and catch fishes at the Loktak Lake and that is our family’s source of income. My mother (Binita Devi) is just a homemaker,” Sunil told PTI after winning the bronze in Hangzhou.

“When I started it was very difficult as the boat and other equipment cost a lot. One pedal costs a minimum of Rs 40,000 and a boat costs Rs 4-5 lakh.

“Initially, my family and relatives chipped in to finance me but after I joined the Indian Army in 2017, I was able to manage myself,” said Sunil, who is now a havildar in the Army.

Sunil’s passion for water is inherent as he was born and brought up near the Loktak Lake, the largest freshwater body in Northeast India, and it also houses the famous Keibul Lamjao National Park.

Sunil took his first canoeing lessons at the water sports training complex near the lake. He shifted to Hyderabad in 2013 on the advice of his aunt who is also a canoe coach.

In 2015, he got selected for the national camp and he became the national champion next year.

He then trained at the Roorkee Army centre but polished his skills at the Bhopal SAI Centre under Pijush Baroi, who is the men’s coach.

Arjun was also in Roorkee before shifting to Bhopal recently on the advice of Borai. They paired up for the first time a few months ahead of the Canoe Sprint World Championships in Germany in August, where they reached the final and finished ninth.

Arjun’s family is from Bhagpat, Uttar Pradesh, but later they shifted to Roorkee.

Arjun too trains at the SAI, Bhopal but that has not made him forget the tough days when his family struggled to make both ends meet.

“My father is no more and my mother works at a medicine manufacturing factory in Roorkee and earns Rs 8000 to Rs 10000 a month.

“We live in a rented house. It was very difficult with that meagre income. My mother suffered a lot,” said Arjun.

“It is a little better now since I am at the Bhopal SAI Centre where I am very well taken care of,” said Arjun, a class 12 student.

But Arjun will forever be indebted to his uncle, Ajit Singh for that change in life.

Ajit, a national and international canoer, asked Arjun to shift to Roorkee along with his family in 2017 to train there at the Army Node. Arjun was 12 then.

Arjun was also at Jagatpur SAI Centre in Odisha for a brief period in 2022 before coming to Bhopal earlier this year.

“I have been fascinated with water sports since childhood. My uncle encouraged me a lot. I became so passionate about water sports that I often dream of my competitions. Even yesterday (in Hangzhou), I was competing in my dreams and winning a medal,” said Arjun.

The youngster idolises Martin Fuksa of Czech Republic, the reigning world champion in canoe single 1000m event. But Arjun now has a bigger target ahead of him – Paris Olympics.

“Paris Olympics is my target and we will do our best to get there,” he said.

But it is easier said than done as the pair of Arjun and Sunil, according to Baroi, will have to finish second in the Olympics qualification event to be held in Paris in April next year.

“Let’s see what happens there,” Baroi said.

But hope in his voice is unmistakable.

Topics mentioned in this article

Source link

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sports

Kolkata Derby In Durand Cup To Be Played On August 18

Published

on

By


Teams Mohun Bagan nd East Bengal© X (Twitter)




Reigning champions Mohun Bagan Super Giant will take on Downtown Heroes FC of Kashmir in the inaugural match of the Durand Cup in Kolkata on July 27, while the much-anticipated Kolkata Derby between MBSG and East Bengal, which will also be the last group game, will take place on August 18. The 133rd edition of Asia’s oldest and world’s fifth oldest tournament will be played in four cities — Kolkata, Kokrajhar in Assam, Shillong in Meghalaya and Jamshedpur in Jharkhand. While matches in Group A, B and C will take place in Kolkata, the first match in Jamshedpur, a first-time host where Group D matches will be played, will see Jamshedpur FC take on Bangladesh Army Football team — one of the two foreign sides in the tournament.

The Group E games will begin in Kokrajhar on July 30 with local side Bodoland FC taking on ISL side NorthEast United FC.

Shillong, which will also host the Durand Cup for the first time, will see the Shillong Lajong FC take on Nepal’s Tribhuvan Army Football Team on August 2, in the first fixture of Group F.

President Droupadi Murmu had recently flagged off the trophy tour of the century-old tournament in New Delhi.

The Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan and Kishore Bharati Krirangan in Kolkata, JRD Tata Sports Complex in Jamshedpur, SAI Stadium in Kokrajhar and the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Shillong, will host a total of 43 matches.

A total of 24 teams have been divided into six groups with the six group toppers and two best second-placed teams slated to qualify for the knockouts. 

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

Topics mentioned in this article



Source link

Continue Reading

Sports

‘Athletes Should Be In Best Shape For Olympics’: India Sports Minister To Stakeholders

Published

on

By






Sports Minister Mansukh Mandaviya on Friday asked all stakeholders involved in the preparation of Indian athletes for the Paris Olympic to ensure the elite players are in the best possible mental and physical shape to excel on the grand stage. A total of 118 athletes, including 48 women, across 16 sports disciplines will compete at the Paris Games. While 72 athletes have qualified for Games for the first time, 26 have come through the government’s ambitious programme, Khelo India.

“As our athletes enter this critical phase of preparation and competition, it’s essential that we ensure they are in the best physical and mental condition to excel,” said Mandaviya, while chairing a high-level meeting to review India’s preparation for the Olympics.

The ministry has also established a coordination group to ensure holistic support for athletes and to address any issues that arise in the lead-up to and throughout the Paris Games.

The minister also expressed satisfaction that over 80 per cent of the qualified athletes were already training at various locations in Europe, ensuring they would not encounter acclimatisation issues.

“The government is committed to providing comprehensive support to Indian athletes through the Target Olympic Podium Scheme (TOPS), ensuring they have the best possible preparation for the Paris 2024 Olympics,” said a sports ministry statement.

“This includes the engagement of world-class coaches and experts to enhance training programs, organising competitive exposures to give athletes vital experience, and taking initiatives focused on rehabilitation and injury management.

“For the first time, a recovery centre with sports science equipment will be available for Indian athletes at the Games Village. Additionally, India House has been set up at the Park of Nations in Paris, joining 14 other countries, including France, with similar houses. Importantly, all decisions are made with a focus on the athletes’ needs and perspectives,” the statement added.

“These efforts underscore the dedication to optimizing athletes’ performance and well-being, demonstrating a strong commitment to their success and achievement,” said the statement. 

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

Topics mentioned in this article



Source link

Continue Reading

Sports

Olympic Esports Games Will Elevate Status Of The Sport: ESFI Chief

Published

on

By


File image of ESFI director Lokesh Suji© X (Twitter)




The Esports Federation of India (ESFI) director Lokesh Suji on Friday welcomed the International Olympic Committee’s decision to host the Olympic Esports Games next year, saying that it will elevate the status of the rapidly-growing game and bring “greater opportunity” to the players. The IOC has announced a partnership with the National Olympic Committee (NOC) of Saudi Arabia to organise the inaugural Olympic Esports Games in 2025. The IOC has followed up on its previous announcement that its Executive Board had laid the groundwork for a standalone multi-national event in the form of the Olympic Esports Games.

A proposal will be floated in the upcoming IOC session on the eve of the Paris Olympics, where the venue, timings, titles to be included and the qualification process will be revealed for the Olympic Esports Games.

“This decision marks a significant milestone in the global recognition and growth of esports, providing a prestigious platform for athletes from around the world to showcase their skills on an unparalleled stage,” said Suji, who is also the vice-president of the Asian Esports Federation (AESF).

“Finally, esports at the Olympics — this is the news we have all been waiting for. We thank the leadership and the entire IOC for transforming our dreams into reality,” he added.

Suji said the Olympic Esports Games will bring more opportunities to the players. “This development not only elevates the status of esports but also paves the way for greater opportunities and support for players and enthusiasts in India and beyond,” he added. 

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

Topics mentioned in this article



Source link

Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2023 Dailycrunch. & Managed by Shade Marketing & PR Agency