Saturday, October 23, 2021

After my father, Sushil Kumar is my idol: Babita Phogat

Sushil Kumar's medal winning feat at Beijing Olympics in 2008 continues to inspire Babita Phogat till date.

By: PTI | Bengaluru |
February 25, 2017 6:32:19 pm
Babita Kumari of India (in blue) and Byambatseren Sundev of Mangolia fights for the 55kg FW bronze during the Senior Asian Wrestling championship at IG stadium in New Delhi on April 20th 2013. Express photo by RAVI KANOJIA. Babita Phogat stated that her first and foremost idol is her father. (Source: Express photo by Ravi Kanojia)

Wrestler Babita Phogat on Saturday said that she draws inspiration from her father Mahavir Singh Phogat and two-time Olympic medallist Sushil Kumar.

“First and foremost my idol has been my father. He is the real star and real hero. And after him, Sushil Kumar is my idol. He inspired me after winning a medal in 2008 (at Beijing Olympics),” Babita said after inaugurating a two-day yoga and self-defence workshop for women, organised by Akshar Yoga and Chikkaballapur MLA Dr K Sudhakar, here.

Babita’s elder sister Geeta Phogat was also present to unveil the workshop. Babita said Aamir Khan starrer blockbuster movie ‘Dangal’ brought in public domain the unknown facts about former wrestler Mahavir Singh’s struggles and sacrifices to make his daughters worldclass grapplers.

“What good Dangal has done is that it has brought my father’s struggles and sacrifices into public domain. My father had to fight against the society and relatives to make us worldclass wrestlers,” Glasgow Commonwealth Games gold medallist said.

“Weakest point of my father is that he is very emotional. He appears to be strict as a coach, but as a father he is damn emotional. This is his weak and strong point,” she added.

Talking about the film, Babita said she thoroughly enjoyed the movie as it brought back childhood memories. “Each character enacted in the film was very real. We never ever realised, we were watching a film, but experiencing our bygone days,” she said.

Asked about marriage, Babita said her aim in her life is to win an Olympic medal for the country. “I will get married when my parents want me to, but before I could do this, I want to win a Olympic medal for the country,” she said.

Replying to a query, Babita said eating non-veg is a necessity rather than a choice. “Eating non-veg is not our habit. We eat it because at times when there are no other alternatives, especially when we are travelling abroad. We hardly get vegetarian food there. However, my father ate chicken and non-veg as he was a wrestler,” she said.

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