As Pusarla Venkata Sindhu storms her way into badminton finals of Rio Olympics, here are some unknown aspects about the player's journey that'll inspire you to the core.
1. Sindhu was born on July 5, 1995 in Hyderabad and her parents—P.V. Ramanna and P. Vijaya were both former professional volleyball players. However, she was more interested in badminton and was a huge fan of Pullela Gopichand, who won the 2001 All England Open Badminton Championship.
2. Sindhu started playing badminton at the age of eight. She learnt the basics of the sport from Mehboob Ali and used to practice at the badminton courts of Indian Railway Institute of Signal Engineering and Telecommunications in Secunderabad. The young shuttler used to travel 56 kms from her residence to practice everyday and always had the dream to become an ace badminton player. That's dedication!
3. After she started training in Gopichand's badminton academy, there was no looking back. She won the 5th Servo All India ranking championship in doubles for under 10 years category, singles title at the Ambuja Cement All India ranking and under-14 team gold medal at the 51st National School Games in India, apart from several other national level tournaments. Impressed by her skills, Gopichand once said, "the most striking feature in Sindhu's game is her attitude and the never-say-die spirit."
4. The 21 year old player made India proud at international level when she won Asia Youth Under 19 Championship, beating Japanese player Nozomi Okuhara (the same one she defeated yesterday to enter Olympic's finals), and also stunned the world when she beat London 2012 Olympics gold medallist Li Xuerui of China in Li Ning China Masters Super Series tournament. In January this year, Sindhu again made the country proud by winning Malaysia Masters Grand Prix Gold women's single title.
5. The badminton champion currently ranks 10th in the world and was also awarded Padma Shri in 2015 and Arjuna Award in 2013.
And as she battles for the gold today, we wish her best of luck and hope she inspires millions to follow her footsteps. More power to you, girl!