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India's young stars ready to dominate world sport

With more youngsters taking on the world, India could achieve dominance in the world sporting arena. Last year’s London Games were a sign of India’s growing clout and the future looks secure in the hands of young sportspersons. Saurabh Duggal reports.

sports Updated: Nov 13, 2013 13:06 IST
Saurabh Duggal
PV Sindhu

Shuttler PV Sindhu became eligible for the Indian driving license last month, and just a couple of days ago she created history by becoming the first Indian woman singles player to have a world championship medal in her kitty. On her way to bronze, she outclassed the defending champion from China.

A few months ago, 19-year-old Olympian boxer Shiva Thapa won the Asian championship title and is currently ranked fourth in the world.

London Olympic Games quarterfinalist L Devendro Singh, 20, is ranked second in the latest world rankings released by the world boxing body, AIBA.

Amit Kumar, then 18, was the youngest competitor in the wrestling event during the London Olympics last year. That he made it to the quarterfinals was no mean achievement, and this year he has already won gold in the Asian championship.

Last year, wrestling sisters, Geeta and Babita, created history by becoming the first siblings to have won world championship medals — bronze — at the same meet.

With more and more youngsters taking on the world, India looks like it could achieve dominance in the world sporting arena. Last year’s London Games were a sign of India’s growing clout and the future looks secure in the hands of these youngsters.

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Just a number
“Age is just a number. No matters how young or old you are, what matters is how you are going to take on your opponent. With more and more youngsters achieving excellence, the world is getting wary of us,” says Shiva Thapa.

Last week, the Indian junior women’s hockey team created history by becoming the first ever to clinch a world championship medal.

“This junior world cup bronze is a stepping stone for bigger victories, and we will not let the momentum set by this triumph die,” says Rani Rampal, the chief architect of the bronze-medal win in the tournament.