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Haryana-based 84-year-old athlete proves age is just a number

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For some people, age is just a number. This is proved by an 84-year-old athlete GS Saunkhla who continues to inspire millions by turning day and day for his training and winning medals across championships in the world.

He recently bagged three medals at the 29th Haryana Masters Athletics Championship held at Mahavir Stadium in Hissar.

Saunkhla made his name known in the long jump and triple jump events, as in the competition about 350 athletes participated.

"I have been fond of it from childhood. I have also participated in a 42km marathon in 1973 at Calcutta and I was able to finish at the second spot there. I always knew that I had the talent. I have a total of 35 medals across competitions. I have won 11 medals in Asia," Saunkhla told ANI.

"All the people that are here, they are very motivated. My target keeps on changing, once I achieve something, I look forward to the next challenge. Since 2008, I have been selected regularly in Asia. Few competitions I had to miss as we have to go there at our expense. I would like to encourage everyone to get themselves enrolled in sporting activity," he added.

Saunkhla has also managed to win medals in Asian and International Masters Championship.

He claims to be the oldest international master athlete from Panchkula to participate in the 41st National Masters Athletics Championship.

The tournament will be held from February 9-14 at Imphal.

"We used to get a cash prize, in 1999, a parallel association entered and we stopped getting cash prizes. We had to fight for 13 years to get our prize. We also fought to get our rewards doubled. In 2013, a person created his separate association and now we are not getting cash prize," Saunkhla said.

The veteran's coach also expressed his happiness with the dedication Saunkhla's keeps on showing and added that he will become an inspiration for millions.

"He has always made us proud. He is very dedicated, mya parents are of the same age. He has never missed a practice session, in this age, walking is hard, but he can do a long jump. By this, you can guess, how dedicated and passionate he is. Age is no bar for him. I am sure he will perform well going ahead," the coach said.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sun, January 12 2020. 09:26 IST
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