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Manipuri weightlifters aim for Asian Games gold

Imphal, April 26: Saikhom Mirabai Chanu, who bagged the first gold medal for India at the Commonwealth Games (CWG) and Khumukcham Sanjita, the other Manipuri weightlifter who also won a gold, announced on Thursday that they are aiming for gold medals at the forthcoming Asian Games also.
They both added that they will work for other gold medals in the 2020 Olympic games.
“We would have loved to spend several days with our parents, friends and well wishers. But our coaches told us to come back soon. We are leaving Imphal on Sunday,” Mirabai said at the Imphal international airport soon after arrival from New Delhi.
A large crowd had gathered at the airport since morning to accord a rousing welcome to these girl weightlifters who had done India proud. This is the first visit to their home state after winning gold medals at the Gold Coast CWG.
Sanjita, who had won a gold medal in weightlifting in 2014 said that she was overjoyed by the enthusiastic reception accorded to them at the international airport.
Later they were taken to Khuman Lampak Sports complex where some sports lovers and the Manipur government youth and sports department felicitated them.
Traffic was held up at several places to allow their cavalcade to pass. Mirabai said that she attained the present status as a result of the training given by the coaches and other teachers.
The director of the youth and sports department, N. Parveen, said that efforts are being made to provide the proper infrastructure to promising sportspersons.
“The government came to know of their performances only when they won international medals. They have been undergoing training although there is no modern infrastructure. Sanjita said that the promising sportspersons should work very hard and one day they will win medals in the international events,” he said.
Mirabai said that if the sportspersons work sincerely they could win laurels at home and abroad. IANS

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Ankur Kalita