Champion weightlifter Karnam Malleswari and former India cricketer Chandu Borde won the IDFC First Bank Lifetime Achievement Award at the Sportstar Aces Awards 2024 held at the Taj Mahal Palace here on Thursday.
Malleswari brought home a bronze medal at the 2000 Sydney Olympics. “I would like to dedicate this award to my husband (Rajesh Tyagi). In 1998, I had a back injury for six months after marriage. I thought my career was over. But my husband had a lot of belief in me. He said that I would recover and start performing again. At that time, I was at home, and there was no gym anywhere nearby. If I had ordered a set of barbells from Kolkata, that would have also taken a month to come.
“He went himself and got a 180-kg barbell set after travelling by train and taxi. I trained in the living area of our one-bedroom house for six months,” Malleswari said.
“I like it when young sportspeople are inspired by my story and performances. I would like to congratulate all those going to the Paris Olympics and wish them best of luck. Bring back lots of medals,” Malleswari said.
Borde made 55 Test appearances and had a double of over 3,000 runs and 50 wickets. After retiring from the game, he contributed as chief selector, India’s team manager, to curator and even a match referee.
“This takes me back to when I was associated with a lot of great cricketers — Polly Umrigar, Sanjay Manjrekar, Sunil Gavaskar, Sachin Tendulkar, Kapil Dev, Nawab of Pataudi…,” Borde, 89, said.
“When we selected the 1983 World Cup team, the selectors thought of players who could contribute more to the team. That is why we selected more all-rounders. They contribute much more to the team than specialists,” Borde said.