Autistic Golfer Ranveer Singh First Indian To Win Gold At Special Olympics At Los Angeles

03/08/2015 9:57 AM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:25 AM IST

An Indian golfer, who has been living with autism since he was two years old, has won India's first gold at the Special Olympics World Games in Los Angeles, according to reports.

Ranveer Singh Saini, 14, achieved the feat in GF Golf-Level 2 Alternate Shot Team Play event on Friday, PTI reported.

Ranveer and his partner Monica Jajoo were nine shots clear of joint second-placed teams from Hong Kong (Tsz Leung Chung-Ka Kit Lam) and Nippon (Takefumi Hiyoshi-Tadatoshi Sakai). The Gurgaon-based teenager was diagnosed with autism, a neurological disorder characterised by impaired social interaction, at the age of 2. He took to the sport at the age of nine.

Two years ago Saini became the first Indian golfer to win two gold medals at the Asia Pacific World Games.

After being impressed by Ranveer’s performances at the international level, the Indian Golf Union went all out in motivating renowned coach Anitya Chand to train the kid.

Anitya Chand who has coached Ranveer right from the onset f his career said, "From holding a club for the first time to winning in Macau, Ranveer has come a long way. It wasn’t as easy as it sounds because the biggest challenge for me was to communicate with him. Soon he realized that he should listen to me and now he hits a 260 yards ball and can play with any normal golfer."

Contingent from Delhi's Asha Kiran Home

The contingent from Delhi Government run Asha Kiran Home has bagged six medals so far at the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games being held in Los Angeles. A ten-member contingent from Asha Kiran Home for mentally-challenged is part of the Indian team to participate in the 2015 Special Olympics being held from July 25 to August 2.

"Phoolan Devi has won the first Gold for India in Power-lifting (Bench Press). She has also won 3-Bronze medals in power-lifting (all lifts, dead-lift and squat lift)," a Delhi Government release said.

"Sonakshi has won Bronze in power-lifting (Bench-press).

The Gold for Soft-ball (team event) was won by Mathru. In total, Asha Kiran has won 6-medals till now (2 Gold and 4 Bronze)," it added.

The Indian team is participate in cycling, handball, power lifting, softball and volleyball events. More than 7,000 Special Olympics athletes from 170 nations are competing in 25 Olympic-type sports.

Brick loader's son wins cycling gold

The son of a brick loader, 15-year-old Rajvir Singh from Ludhiana's Siar village won gold in one kilometre time trial event clocking one minute and 54.51 seconds, reported Indian Express. Singh's father said he could not raise the money to buy his son, who needs help dressing and cannot read or write, a professional cycle till even a few months back.

Another Indian, Ravi Kumar, grabbed the second place in the same event. Rajvir grabbed his second gold by finishing first in the 2 km time trial event as well on Saturday, the report said.

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