India was a hit at this year’s Asian Games. Having won 69 medals in all through various events, that include 15 gold medals, this year was India’s best ever performance ever since the beginning of Asian Games back in 1951. Among these 69 winners, six of them are teenagers, the youngest ones to have made the country proud of their achievements. Let’s have a look at them and keep the flag flying high.
- The 16 year old Saurabh Choudhury
This class XI boy is a star shooter who bagged gold at this year’s Asian Games. At the 10m air pistol event, he went on to defeat several world champions, even Olympic medalists and bagged the prestigious gold medal for India. He exhibited utmost calmness and maturity at the event and broke records at his first ever senior game event. Just a few months back, he bagged another gold at the Junior World Cup held in Germany, where again he created new records after smashing the old ones. After the Asian Games, he is now preparing to participate in the World Championships.
- The 15 year old Shardul Vihan
Having won four National titles in 2017 and a medal at the Germany Junior World Cup, this Meerut boy has now bagged a medal at the Asian Games, being the youngest Indian shooter at the Games. He bagged the second position at the event. The surprising part is that he started training only four years ago, when he took shooting as a serious event in his life. He was training under coach Anwar Sultan from Shamli. India’s ace shooter Abhinav Bindra and Union Sports minister Raghavendra Rathore who had won silver at Olympics in 2004 praised this Meerut boy at his utmost dedication towards the game. We all are so proud of him!
- The 17 year old Roshibina Devi Naorem
She won bronze at the 18th Asian Games at the event of Wushu, which also happens to be India’s first ever medal at the event. In the finals, she lost 0-1 to her opponent from China. But in the quarter final she easily defeated 2-0 her rival from Pakistan. If you are wondering what Wushu is, it is a form of martial art, also called the Chinese Kung Fu.
- The 19 year old Lakshay Sheoran
Lakshay is the third only Indian to have won silver at the men’s trap at Asian Games after Karni Singh and Manavjit SIngh Sandhu in 1974 and 2006 respectively. This was the first time Lakshay was participating at the Asian Games. He trained at the Sonepat Centre of Excellence that belongs to the Sports Authority of India. Having participated and competed in many World Championships events, Lakshay was determined this time to bring home a medal. He was calm and focused throughout the game and scored a perfect 5/5 and bagged home the silver.
- The 19 year old Malaprabha Jadhav
This 19 year old participated in an event called Kurash and gave India her second medal at the event. This game was introduced at the Asian Game for the first time this year and Malaprabha bagged a bronze at the game. Such a proud moment for India! While Malaprabha was training for judo at the sports hostel in Belagavi, her mentors and coaches noticed her amazing talent and she was then brought to the National Sports Academy in Noida. It was only during the final round of preparation for the Asian Games when she went to Uzbekistan to train and there her coaches realized that she could be a good Kurash player too, under proper guidance and training. She ultimately chose to combine her wrestling and judo skills and participated in Kurash under the 52kg section. Before her win at the Asian Games, she had bagged two gold, one silver and one bronze at the national level and was awarded with the Ekalavya award by her state.
- The 19 year old Pincky Balhara
Pincky was the first Indian to grab a medal at the newly introduced Kurash event at the Asian Games this year. She bagged a silver medal, even after the tragedy she went through. In three months of the Asian Games, she lost three of her family members, including her father. But that did not set back the athlete in her. Pincky is the most promising judo player in the country right now and is a two-time silver medalist at national level judo. She also bagged the gold medal in judo at this year’s Junior Asian Championships held in Germany.
These six teenagers are the youngest to have joined the most successful athletes India saw at the Asian Games this year. We wish them a successful career ahead!