TAMIL NADU

This little champion won their hearts

THE WINNER: Parameshwari presenting a cup to a student of Government Girls' Middle School at Veeraveli on Tuesday. — Photo: T. Singaravelou

THE WINNER: Parameshwari presenting a cup to a student of Government Girls' Middle School at Veeraveli on Tuesday. — Photo: T. Singaravelou  

Parameshwari took up kho-kho at age eight

Deepa H Ramakrishnan

PONDICHERRY: She may not be as popular as Indian tennis sensation, Sania Mirza. But the girls adored her for what she is - a tough player. S. Parameshwari, a standard X student and a bronze medallist at the national level kho-kho sub-junior league, won the hearts of the 121 students of Government Girls Middle School, Veeraveli, in Pondicherry with her oration.

The 14-year-old lass addressed the girls on their sports day on Tuesday. For a change, the school administration decided to invite the student and sports achiever to preside over as chief guest at the school sports day function.

From questions about her personal beliefs, to how she felt when faced with defeat, there was a volley of questions from students, who had gathered inside a classroom for the function.

But the school, situated in the town area, lacks open space to host large-scale sports activities and instead utilises the nearby Indira Gandhi Stadium.

Consistent winner

Ms. Parameshwari told the audience how she had won bronze medals in the 18th and 19th sub-junior level during 2003-04 and 2004-05 in kho-kho. She also explained the basic rules of the game to the students.

"I started playing the game from the age of eight when I was studying in standard III and then joined the school team. My school, the Government Girls Higher Secondary School, Kadikamam, has been winning the inter-school under-17 girls' kho-kho zonal championship for four consecutive years from 2000-01.Though there have been many ups and downs in my sports career, but we as a team never lost hope and always aimed to win the next time".

Her advise seemed apt for the students who had won cups and prizes in various events including frog race, kangaroo race, duck walk, running, skipping and lemon and spoon held on the occasion.

Though Ms. Parameshwari has played at the national level, she has not ignored her academics. She manages to score 90 in the examinations. As for her aspirations — she hopes to become a PT teacher after completing schooling.

"Though we don't have enough space in the school premises, we have a lot of sports equipment. Our children are very enthusiastic to participate in sports events," said school head mistress Hemavathy.

Deputy Director (Sports) R. Valavan said that the government had initiated schemes for sportspersons. But it was up to students to avail the facilities and scholarships. Mr. Valavan later distributed prizes to the winners.

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