Sweety Kumari: Rugby player from Bihar hailed as ‘international young player of year’
The 19-year-old women’s rugby player Sweety Kumari was named as the “international young player of the year” by popular women’s rugby website Scrumqueens. Sweety was earlier declared by Asia Rugby as the “continent’s fastest player”, according to Scrumqueens. Sweety, who hails from Nawada village in Barh tehsil of Patna, plays as a winger in the team, and is nicknamed India’s “Scoring Machine” by teammates.
“She impressed from the start, but it was this year that she started making a big impact in Asia, at both sevens and fifteens. Described by Asia Rugby as the continent’s fastest player, her explosive pace and power has resulted in her top scoring at most of India’s sevens tournaments, as well as scoring two outstanding tries in their first ever test match win against Singapore,” Scrumqueens wrote on their website.
As per a report from Indian Express, Sweety pursued her elder brother in athletics and participated in sprints during her younger days. Speaking to Indian Express about her brother, she said: “He’s left sport, he gave up because it was hard work. Now, my father keeps scolding my siblings to study and tells them ‘Sweety ki life toh set hai, usse kuchh seekho’.”
Her father worked as a handyman, while Sweety’s mother was an anganwadi worker. Speaking about her relations with her family, she said: “My father put me ahead of others and helped me in every way he could. I would tell coaches to lend me spikes, I would prove I deserved them by winning.”
With rugby starting to get attention in the state, Sweety has garnered fame in her home district. “When I walked in 10 minutes late for an exam once, the invigilator started talking to me about my game and others clapped. They let me write the exam with an easy let-off,” she said.