Mumbai: Olympic Gold Quest (OGQ) today announced that it would be supporting swimmer Maana Patel and table tennis player Archana Kamath, both aged 14, under its scholarship programme.
The Not for Profit organisation, co-founded by sports legends Geet Sethi and Prakash Padukone, would be supporting these two young girls with an eye on the 2020 and 2024 Olympics, said a release today.
Maana is the latest swimming hope as she currently holds the senior national record in the 50, 100 and 200 M backstroke events and is the fastest backstroker across all groups in the country.
She won gold and a silver medal at the Dubai
International aquatic meet in 2014.
Paddler Archana is currently ranked number 12 in the world in the under 15 age category.
In October 2014, she was the only Indian to be selected to represent Team Asia at the ITTF World Cadet Challenge in Barbados.
The team won a silver medal and Archana herself finished in a creditable 9th position in the individual event with three notable victories over higher ranked players including the world No 8 from Brazil.
"This is a very significant step for OGQ as we enter into two new sports for the first time. Our selection process is extremely stringent given that our mission is to help Indian athletes win Olympic gold medals," said Viren Rasquinha, CEO of OGQ.
"We are very impressed with the performance, hunger and dedication of both Maana and Archana at a very young age. We are confident that with the right grooming and support, they both can make the country very proud.
"They are long term prospects and we must have patience and not put too much pressure on them. OGQ is very proud to support both Maana and Archana," he added.