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Motherhood not stopping athletes from chasing glory

india Updated: Jul 26, 2012 00:15 IST
Saurabh Duggal
Saurabh Duggal
Hindustan Times
Saurabh Duggal

Marriage of a sportswoman in India usually means the end of her sporting career. And eying international glory after motherhood is almost next to impossible. But three super moms have defied all odds and broken all social barriers, and are all set to represent the country in the highest sporting arena — Olympics.

The mothers — Krishna Poonia (discus), Mary Kom (boxing) and Sahana Kumari (high jump) are part of the 83-member Indian contingent.

For these sporty moms, it is not only about the hardship they had to face to achieve glory after motherhood but also that they have to constantly bear the pain of staying away from their kids for long durations, when there are toiling hard in the national camps.

Krishna Poonia, 32, who created history by becoming the first Indian woman to clinch an athletics gold in the Commonwelath Games, is the mother of a 11-year-old and is all set to make a mark in her second consecutive appearance at the Olympics. "My son Lakshay Raj wants to witness my event here in London, but as we both (she and husband Virender Poonia, her coach) will be busy and there will be no one to take care of him here, I had to ask him to watch my event on television in India. He is very understanding and never complains to me for not giving him time," says Krishna. The discus thrower donned the national colours only after her marriage and won her first international medal after she had become a mother.

A mother of twin boys, Mary Kom, 29, will be appearing in her first Olympics, as women's boxing is making its debut in London. The much-decorated boxer wants to add an Olympic medal to demonstrate the power of Indian women. "I am very lucky I am getting full support from my husband and his family. Otherwise, in India women have to really face a lot of hardships to realise their dreams.

I want to prove to the world that Indian women are second to none," says Kom, a five-time world champion. Her dedication can be gauged from the fact that she had to leave her four-year-old son K Khupneivar in the hospital last year as he was suffering from a congenital heart disease, to compete in the Asia Cup event in China.

Sahana Kumari (31), who is making her Olympics debut, is the mother of a six-year-old girl child, Pavana. The Bangalore-based Sahana cleared 1.92 metres to achieve the B standard and make it to the Games.

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