Nidhi Singh and Meet Makhija are Saturday's champions
Singh wins three gold medals at YMCA athletics, Makhija wins two gold medals at aquatic championships
Meet Makhija of Arya Vidya Mandir (Bandra) won two gold medals in the Mumbai Schools Sports Association (MSSA) 50th Annual Aquatic Championship at the Andheri Sports Complex on Saturday.
He stood first in the under-10 boys’ 50m-butterfly stroke, clocking 00:36.23s. Armaan Sikka (00:36.32 sec) of Oberoi International School came second and Srish Maulik (00:36.55sec) of Smt RSB Arya Vidyamandir finished third.
Meet created a new meet record. He broke Ryan International student — Siddhant Thakkar’s record of 00:36:68 created in 2010. Later, he teamed up with Aryan Makhija, Neil Roy, and Sunit Vaidya to win the 4x50 freestyle relay gold.
The nine-year-old said: “I was five when my mother (Vineeta) used to take me to Khar Gymkhana for swimming lessons. I didn’t realise when the sport became my passion. My day would be incomplete if I didn’t swim. I have been participating in competitive events since since October 2011,” he said.
The youngster credits his coach — Subodh Danke for his success. “Danke sir ensures that I put in five hours of rigorous practice in the pool everyday. I like playing other sports like cricket and football, but I love my time in the pool.
Hours in the pool don’t tire me,” said the Class IV student. The youngster watches a lot of videos to improve his skills. “My coach is a great, but I watch a lot of videos online to learn new techniques. Watching videos of my idol Michael Phelps Youtube have helped me a lot,” said the Khar resident.
Meet is delighted to better his last year’s performance. “I was content winning a silver medal in U-10 butterfly stroke last year. Winning a gold and breaking the earlier record is a different high. Today’s performance has motivated me to work harder,” added Meet.
Thane’s Nidhi Singh (Smt Sulochanadevi Singhania school) won three gold medals in the girls under-16 category at the Bombay YMCA State Level Athletic Championships, held at Sports Authority of India Complex on Saturday.
She triumphed in the 100m (12.9 secs), 400m (60.0 secs) and 800m (2:29.3 secs). The girl who trains at the Achievers Sports Academy is confident of winning another gold medal in the 200m sprint today.
Sharing the day’s limelight with Nidhi was Sandita Da’Souza from Prabodhan, Goregaon. Sandita stood first in 400m and 800m events in the girls’ under-18 category.
In the Girls’ U-18 shot put event, Bombay Parsi Panchayat’s Daver Zeshah bagged the gold with a throw of 9.81 mts. Poorna Raoranhe was second with an effort of 9.78m and Sakshi Parmar threw 8.46 m to finish third.