Gujarat, July 13: National level swimmer from Ahmedabad-Maana Patel-has found a place for herself in India's sports history as she clocked 1.05.67 in the Group II (age 13-14) category in the 40th Junior National Aquatic Championship held in Hyderabad. She won a Gold in the 100 m backstroke event with a record time, best ever in the history of sports. While congratulating all the winners, Chief Minister Narendra Modi extends his regards to the young achiever on tweet.
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet blockquote"><p>Congratulations to Maana Patel, a 13 yr old swimmer who has set a national record at Junior National Championship <a href="http://t.co/woFHnvmXHG">http://t.co/woFHnvmXHG</a></p>— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) <a href="https://twitter.com/narendramodi/statuses/355695585073958914">July 12, 2013</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>
Also the youngest record holder in the event, she beat Olympian Shikha Tandon's national record of 1.06.95, set at the national championship in Kolkata in September 2003. Moreover, Shikha recorded this time when she was 18, but Maana toppled it when she is all of 13 years old.
Maana received a standing ovation for her performance from the crowd. The excited little girl said,"I wasn't nervous. I was instead really excited about the event. The feeling of hundreds applauding you is simply great." "All my friends from other states and many national coaches congratulated me but the feeling of stardom is yet to sink in," she further added.
General Secretary of the Swimming Federation of India and her coach, Kamlesh Nanavati, was almost in tears and promised that India is yet to see a lot more of her record-breaking performances. Gujarat swimmers Geetanjali Pandey and Neil Contractor also won medals in the event.
14-year-old Pandey clocked 2.15.58, her personal best, to win gold in 200m freestyle event of Group II. Neil, 17, also won silver in 100m breaststroke, with his personal best time of 1.08.84.