Mirabai Chanu, an Indian weightlifter, has made history by winning a silver medal in the women’s 49kg category at the Tokyo Olympics 2020. While the rest of India is celebrating her achievement, Mirabai Chanu has opened up about her life and her journey to the Tokyo Olympics in an exclusive interview with WION.
During her four successful attempts, she lifted a total of 202 kg (87kg in snatch and 115kg in clean and jerk). “I came here after years of hard work,” Chanu told WION, “and when I stood on the podium, I forgot about the fatigue for a while because it’s like a dream come true.”
Hou Zhihui of China set an Olympic record with a lift of 210 kgs (94+116) and won gold. Aisah Windy Cantika, an Indonesian weightlifter, won a bronze medal after lifting 194 kgs (84+110).
Mirabai Chanu successfully lifted 84kg and 87kg. She lifted 84kg in the snatch segment on her first attempt and improved to an 87kg lift on her second attempt. However, because she was placed second, she was unable to lift 89 kg.
Mirabai Chanu’s victory has made Indian sports history, as it comes twenty years after Karnam Malleswari became the first Indian woman to win an Olympic bronze medal in the women’s 69kg weight category at the Sydney Games in 2000.When asked about her performance, Chanu stated, “When I go for the lift, I think about giving my best performance, and if everything goes as planned, the medal will automatically come.”
— WION (@WIONews) July 24, 2021
Prime Minister Narendra Modi penned the following: “Couldn’t have asked for a better way to kick off Tokyo2020! Mirabai Chanu’s outstanding performance has elated India. Congratulations on winning a silver medal in weightlifting. Every Indian is inspired by her success.”
Mirabai Chanu stated that she now wishes to return home because she has been unable to do so due to Olympic preparations. She went on to say that she will continue to train because she still has a lot to accomplish.
Could not have asked for a happier start to @Tokyo2020! India is elated by @mirabai_chanu’s stupendous performance. Congratulations to her for winning the Silver medal in weightlifting. Her success motivates every Indian. #Cheer4India #Tokyo2020 pic.twitter.com/B6uJtDlaJo
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) July 24, 2021