Earlier, Avani Lekhara has won the gold medal. Thereby, equalling the world record in the women’s R2 10m air rifle standing SH1. For it, she got congratulatory messages from all over the country. Praising her, Bollywood superstar Akshay Kumar tweeted, ‘Congratulations #AvaniLekhara for hitting the bullseye and creating history by becoming the first Indian woman to win a #Paralympics gold medal What a debut! #Tokyo2020‘.
Arjun Rampal also greeted her, ‘Congratulations to Team India at the #ParalympicsTokyo2020 it’s raining medals and you all have made us all so so proud. Latest a gold for @AvaniLekhara in 10m air rifle. Awesome stuff.’
After Avani Lekhara’s gold in shooting, another gold for India came shortly. The Indian athlete Sumit Antil, made a new record, thus clinching a gold medal in the javelin throw event.
On Friday, Avani Lekhara elevated the Indian contingent’s medal tally by bagging her second Paralympic medal. She got a bronze medal in the 50 m Rifle 3 Position SH1. Avani finished second at the qualifying round by scoring 1176 which includes 51 inner 10s.
The 19-year-old athlete became the first woman in the country to win two Paralympic medals in the same edition of the Paralympic games. Before her, Joginder Singh Sodhi had won three medals in the 1984 Paralympic games in shot put.
I was inspired by Abhinav Bindra’s autobiography: Avani Lekhara
Avani is particularly inspired by the first-ever Indian Olympic gold medallist in an individual event, Abhinav Bindra. He had prestigiously claimed a gold medal in shooting in the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Bindra also congratulated her, “Avani Lekhara, take a bow young lady! A Bronze in 50m Rifle to add to your historic Gold at the #Tokyo2020 Paralympics. A performance for the ages! Many Congratulations.”
The 19-year-old shooter reveals, “I was inspired by Abhinav Bindra’s autobiography. He gave his 100 per cent in what he did.” Talking about her bronze medal win, she doesn’t seem satisfied with it. However, the shooter is firmly preparing for her next event.
Avani says, “I was not satisfied with my Gold medal only. I wanted to do my last shot better. So, this bronze is definitely not satisfying.”
She adds, “I’m very happy that I was able to get another medal for the country. I still can’t believe it, but I was hoping for medals for my two events — the last one and this one — and I did my best. Now I have one more event, I am focused on that.”
Congratulating Avani, President Kovind tweeted, “Congratulations to Avani Lekhara for winning the bronze and becoming the first Indian woman to win two medals at #Paralympics. This is an outstanding feat at such a young age. Your consistency & commitment to succeed are an inspiration for all. Best wishes for future endeavours.”
Prime Minister Narendra Modi writes, “More glory at the Tokyo #Paralympics. Elated by the stupendous performance of @AvaniLekhara. Congratulations to her on bringing home the Bronze medal. Wishing her the very best for her future endeavours.”
Sports minister Anurag Thakur tweeted, “More glory at the Tokyo #Paralympics. Elated by the stupendous performance of @AvaniLekhara. Congratulations to her on bringing home the Bronze medal. Wishing her the very best for her future endeavours.”
Avani Lekhara is too committed and too motivated: Coach Chandra Shekhar
Avani’s coach Chandra Shekhar says, “I can’t believe that a person, who has suffered such a terrible mishap, can come to terms with life and excel on such a big stage and be a motivation for thousands of people.”
He further stated, “Before she left for Tokyo for the Paralympic Games, we were certain that Avani will win two gold and one more medal of any colour. Avani has won a gold and bronze and will be next seen in action on Sunday in the mixed 50m rifle prone SH1 event. So, I suppose one more gold is due.”
The Indian contingent has now clinched 12 Paralympic medals in the Tokyo Paralympics.