Taekwondo as a martial art and sport is slowly gaining popularity in India. Though it doesn’t enjoy much fan following in the country, India possesses some highly talented Taekwondoin who have brought laurels to the nation. Here, we look at some such Taekwondo players from India:
Latika Bhandari is undoubtedly the best Taekwondoin in India presently. Hailing from the state of Uttarkhand, the now twenty six year old took up the martial art when she was just ten years old. She learnt the basics of the sport from Surendra Bhandari, who has also represented India during the course of his career. Latika first tasted success in the international level when she bagged a bronze medal during the 2014 Asian Championships in Tashkent. She has since gone to seize two gold medals in South Asian Games (2016 & 2019), a bronze in Fajr Open (2019), a silver in Malaysia Open (2018), another gold in Fujairah Open (2018), and a silver medal each in Commonwealth Championships (2017) and the President Cup (2017). Currently supported by the GoSports Foundation, Latika also coaches young kids when she is not training herself.
Hailing from the north eastern state of Assam, Rodali Barua is one of India’s star Taekwondoin. She started practicing the martial art when she was in class eighth and there has been no looking back for her since. Rodali usually represents the country in the +73kg weight category and had brought various laurels to the country. She had represented India in the World Taekwondo Championships in Korea in June 2017 and won gold at the 35th National Senior Kyorugi and 8th National Senior Pumche Taekwondo Championships held in Visakhapatnam.
Just nineteen years of age, Kashish Malik is one of the fastest rising stars of Indian Taekwondo. Her introduction to the martial art is quite a story in itself. Back when she was 14 years old a male friend of her bullied her, the young Kashish stood up for herself and beat him up. The fight was so bad that her school taekwondo coach had to intervene to stop the fight. The coach later advised her to focus all her anger into Taekwondo and that’s how her journey with the sport began. Kashish represented India in the 2018 Asian Games where she crashed out in the quarterfinals. She has bagged medals at various international events like, Malaysia Open G1 Tournament, Asian Games Invitation Tournament, President Cup, Fujairah Open 2018 and Israel Open 2018.
Aman Kumar Kadyan
Aman Kadyan is supported by the Gosports Foundation and started practicing Taekwondo when he was just fourteen years old. Almost a year after taking up the sport, Aman joined the Peace Taekwondo Academy and has been training under the watchful eyes of Mr. Sayed Hassan Rezai ever since. He has won various international medals including a silver medal at the WT President Cup in the Oceania Region in 2019, a gold at the Indian Open International 2019, and a bronze each at the WT President Cup Asian Region 2018 and Israel Open 2018.
Navjeet Mann is a Taekwondoin based out of Bangalore and has represented India at various international events including the Asian Games 2018, World Championships 2017 and Asian Championship in the year 2016 and 2018. Navjeet’s brightest moment under the sun though came in the year 2016 when he bagged a gold medal in the 2016 South Asian Games.