Youth from Avinashi qualifies for Olympics
19-year-old finally manages to secure funds after Olympics call
Dharun Ayyasamy, a 19-year-old from a village near Avinashi, has qualified to represent India for the Rio Olympics in the 4 X 400 metres relay.
TIRUPUR: The first lap of this race was difficult, but the track is clear now for Dharun Ayyasamy, a 19-year-old lad from a village near Avinashi.
He has qualified for the Rio Olympics to represent India in the 4 X 400 metres relay, and what is more, has found sponsors too. But he has had to fight many odds to get here.
Dharun lost his father 11 years ago, and has been supported in his sporting endeavours by his mother K. Poongodi, a teacher in a private school in Kaniyampoondi here.
“Only after Dharun got silver medals in the junior South Asian Federation games in Jharkhand a few years ago, did financial support start coming. Till he started winning medals, only my brother Boopathy, my sister Mohana and her husband Sivakumar were extending financial support”, Ms. Poongodi told
She fondly recalls the contributions of Sakthi Kumar and J. Alagesan, the school coaches who tutored him on the nuances of athletics, especially running and hurdles.
College gives stipend
A monthly stipend of Rs. 15,000 given by Alva’s College of Arts at Moodabidri in Karnataka, where Dharun is a student of BA (Human Resources) has provided relief, helping the family meet sundry expenses incurred to participate in sports events.
The Olympic qualification brought in the Union Government, which is taking care of all training costs. Financial help from private bodies and individuals too has come after the Olympics entry and the media attention that followed.
The Tirupur Exporters Association, Rotary Club in Avinashi and some individuals have extended financial support to the family.