These women are pioneers in Indian sports, serving as a source of inspiration for thousands nationwide!
With its rich history of cultures and traditions, India has long embraced sports as an essential part of its identity. Despite historical norms that limited women's involvement in sports, Indian women and men have utilised the field of sports to improve their fortunes through hard work and talent. These great female athletes arose in a society where female participation in sports and employment in the field were traditionally discouraged, overcoming restrictions and challenging prejudices. They excelled in diverse sports, such as cricket, boxing, badminton, and tennis.
Their remarkable achievements serve as a testament to their dedication to sports, inspiring countless young girls and boys. These women have become legends, contributing significantly to India's evolving identity as a nation that promotes sports participation. Let's explore the profiles of the top three greatest Indian female athletes.
P.V. Sindhu is widely regarded by a significant segment of Indian sports enthusiasts as the most outstanding female athlete in the country's history. She is the first Indian woman to secure two Olympic medals and boasts an impressive tally of five medals in World Championships. Additionally, Sindhu has earned two medals in the Asian Games, two in the Asian Championships, and five in the Commonwealth Games, including two golds. Her accolades extend to national honours, with Sindhu receiving the Arjuna Award in 2013, the Padma Shri in 2015, the Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna in 2016, and the Padma Bhushan in 2020.
Hailed as one of the most impactful figures in Indian sports, she has navigated her path to success with sheer determination and hard work, overcoming gender discrimination. Recognised as the indomitable force in Indian Olympic boxing, Mary Kom defied societal constraints to become the only woman boxer to secure medals across all formats of amateur boxing! She is the sole female boxer with a remarkable five-time victory as the World Amateur Boxing Champion to claim a medal in six world championships.
Mary Kom etched her name in history as the first Indian woman boxer to qualify for the Summer Olympics, showcasing her resilience at the London Olympics. Her outstanding contributions have earned her prestigious accolades, including the Padma Shri, Arjuna Award for boxing, Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award, and more.
Mithali Raj is a former Indian cricketer who excelled as a right-handed opening batswoman and was the highest run scorer in women's international cricket. Pioneering in her achievements, she is the only female cricketer to surpass the 7,000-run mark in women's one-day international matches.
Mithali made history by becoming the first player to achieve seven consecutive 50s in ODIs. Recognised for her stellar contributions, she has been honoured with various national and international awards, including the Wisden Leading Woman Cricketer in the World in 2017, the Arjuna Award in 2003, and the Padma Shri in 2015 by the Government of India. Her legacy extends globally, making her one of the most distinguished female players. In a significant announcement on June 8, 2022, Mithali Raj declared her retirement from all formats of international cricket.
Women athletes have gained a revered position in society, taking on diverse roles beyond motherhood. They have earned respect and recognition through their dedication and determination to prove their capabilities. There has been a transformative shift in people's attitudes, with women now seen as admirable individuals who inspire the world to strive for excellence.