Manasi Joshi clinches first gold at BWF Para Badminton World Championships
On August 25, para-badminton player Manasi Joshi clinched her first gold at the BWF Para World Championships in Basel, Switzerland. She defeated three-time SL3 world champion Parul Parmar.
Along with PV Sindhu who became the first Indian to win the gold at the BWF World Champion, para-badminton player Manasi Joshi also brought home her first gold at the Para World Badminton Championship.
The 30-year old defeated three-time SL3* world champion Parul Parmar with a score of 21-12, 21-7, although she opened slow with 2-7. Speaking to the Paralympic Committee of India, Manasi said,
"I have trained extremely hard, training three sessions a day. The focus was on my fitness, so I also lost some weight and gained more muscle. I spent more time in the gym, working six sessions a week."
Having played para-badminton since 2015, Manasi also said that winning the gold is a dream come true.
In 2011, Manasi Joshi lost her left leg in an accident when she was hit by a truck at a busy junction. She also broke her arms and sustained multiple other injuries. It took over three hours for Manasi to be transported to a hospital, and she finally made it into the operation theatre 10 hours after she met with the accident. She was in the operating room for another twelve hours, and ended up with an amputated left leg due to gangrene.
In a previous interview with YourStory, Manasi said, “At the time I was thinking that I have just lost a leg, not an organ. If I can't run around, it's okay.”
In 2012, she re-learned how to walk with a prosthetic limb for around four months, and participated in an inter-company badminton championship where she had previously won the gold. This time too, she was crowned winner. This victory gave Manasi a surge in confidence, and she continued playing badminton. She also got trained in scuba diving.
Manasi decided to turn pro in 2014, when she tried out for the Para Asian Games. Although she didn’t get selected, she garnered attention. She has since won medals at various international matches.
*SL3 is a para-badminton category in which players are impaired in one or both lower limbs and have poor walking or running balance.
(Edited by Rekha Balakrishnan)