Long jump athlete and one of the country's most accomplished sportspersons, Anju Bobby George, took the internet by storm on Monday, December 7, when she tweeted that she reached the top with a 'single kidney'.
Anju who bagged a historic bronze medal in 2003 World Athletics Championship in Paris, took to social media to share her struggles where she stated that she had to overcome a number of difficulties including allergies to painkillers. However, it was her strength and passion that pushed her to clinch bronze.
In a tweet, the ace athlete, a gold medallist in the IAAF World Athletics Finals (Monaco, 2005), said she had many limitations including being allergic to even a painkiller.
"I got to know about it only around the time I was returning to training after an ankle injury forced me to miss out on the 2000 Olympics," Anju told ESPN. "I could barely walk for a year after that. Slowly I resumed training but that's when I felt my body wasn't coming together. I was breaking into the international stage then and was struggling with slow recovery, frequent joint pains and finding myself in hospital whenever I took a painkiller. I would just faint if I took anything to relieve pain. Variations in blood profile were erratic, my UA levels were high and fatigue would hit pretty soon during training. All of these factors got me to go for a full body scan and check-up. It's only then I realised that I'm born with a single kidney. I was completely taken aback. I went for multiple abdominal scans to confirm if the tests were right.," George told ESPN.
"If it wasn't for being an athlete, I probably wouldn't have known about my condition at all," she added.
The Athletics Federation of India said that Anju had several feathers to her achievements cap and is among the country's most inspirational field stars. She is country's only medallist at the IAAF World Championships (Paris, 2003), a gold medallist in the IAAF World Athletics Finals (Monaco, 2005), and a remarkably consistent performer throughout her wonderful career.
Responding to Anju's tweet, Union Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju said she made the country proud through her hard work, grit and determination.