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Home » India » Asian Games: 12 toes, bandaged jaw, nothing could stop Swapna Barman win first gold in Heptathlon

Asian Games: 12 toes, bandaged jaw, nothing could stop Swapna Barman win first gold in Heptathlon

By Newsd
Updated on :
From pain and penury to pinnacle of success: The winning tale of gritty Swapna Barman
Image Credit: PTI

Indian athlete Swapna Barman bagged glory to India by winning first Heptathlon gold in Asian Games. Indian athletes had been longing for long to win a gold medal in the sport.

However this was not an easy way for Swapna to make it to this victory. Along with other issues, she struggled the most with the extra finger she had in her legs. It was painful for her to run in the normal pair of shoes. Had any shoemaker made a shoe for her legs that could accommodate her extra finger comfortably, her sufferings would definitely had reduced.

Swapna Barman has six toes in both legs that makes it difficult for her to run in normal shoes. Coming from a not so privileged family she could not afford a special shoe for herself. Her father is a rickshaw puller and mother works in a tea garden.

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Further she was suffering with gums infection and mild fever during the event. Excessive chocolate consumption had infected her gums. To deal with this, the 21-year-old athlete can be seen running with a bandaged jaw.

“The first day, I felt I wouldn’t be able to complete because of the pain, but then I told myself all this hard work would go in vain,” said the 21-year-old Barman.

She logged 6026 points from the seven events competed for two days. En route the title, she won the high jump (1003 points) and javelin throw (872 points) events and finished second-best in shot put (707 points) and long jump (865 points).

Before Barman, only Bengal’s Soma Biswas and Karnataka’s J J Shobha and Pramila Aiyappa had returned with a medal from the Asian Games. Biswas and Shobha had finished two-three at both Busan Asian Games (2002) and the Doha Games (2006), while Pramila had won a bronze at the Guangzhou edition.