New Delhi, July 18: P.T. Usha! Every Indian sports-fan must have experienced the joy of watching the grace, speed and charisma of her in the Eighties. Today, this esteemed sprinter has been nominated for the International Association of Athletics Federation's (IAAF) 'Veteran Pin' for her outstanding service to the sport, leaving a moment of pride for India!
"We are delighted that you have been nominated by your Area Association as a recipient of the IAAF Veteran Pin for your long and meritorious service to the cause of World Athletics," the IAAF CEO Jon Ridgeon informed Usha in a letter. He also extended an invitation to 55-year-old Usha to attend the award ceremony during the opening of the 52nd IAAF Congress at the Qatar National Convention Centre in Doha on eve of September 24."
Thanking to World Body, Usha said, "IAAF Veteran Pin for the long and meritorious service to the cause of World Athletics! Thank you IAAF for this incredible honour,"
Usha is one of the greatest sprinters to have come out of India and is often called the ‘queen of track and field’. She won five gold medals in 100m, 200m, 400m, 400m hurdles and the 4x400m relay, besides a bronze in the 1985 Asian Games in Jakarta. Usha's most memorable performance came in the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics where she became the first Indian to reach the finals of the 400m hurdles, but lost the bronze by one-hundredth of a second.
The ‘Payyoli Express’ was awarded with the prestigious Arjuna Award in 1983. Two years later in 1985, she was conferred with the Padma Shri Award.