The Games have begun amid controversy, hysteria and varied public opinion.
But for every sportsperson in Rio, it means the hard work they put in the last 4 years has to be put to the test. I wonder how much pressure they feel with the hope of their nation riding on them as they remember their commitment to sport.
I acknowledge their hard work, the effort they put in every hour out there improving their body and their game, waking up in the wee hours of the morning while the rest of the world sleeps.
Here are 4 inspiring women and their stories from rio2016.
Only a year after swimming for her life in the Aegean Sea as she fought to escape the war in Syria, 18-year-old Mardini will swim at the Olympics.
She and her sister fled their home in Damascus but were on an overcrowded boat that capsized on its way to the Greek island of Lesbos from Turkey. They and one other were the only people on board who could swim and helped pull the dinghy to safety.
Now living in Germany, Mardini will compete under the Olympic flag as part of the ten-strong refugee team in Rio.
Of the many comeback stories at the Games, Vogel’s is one of the most inspiring.
The German track cyclist has worked her way back from a horrific accident seven years ago to be one of the world’s best and a major threat to Aussie golden girl Anna Meares.
Vogel was hit by a van during a training ride in 2009. She broke many bones, lost most of her lower teeth and was placed in an induced coma for two days but Vogel recovered, got back on the bike, and helped Germany to team sprint gold in London.
There is glory in forging new paths and creating history, but this comes with a massive responsibility that this year is carried by Dipa Karmakar from India.
The girl from Tripura created history by becoming the first Indian woman gymnast to qualify for Olympics as she booked a berth for the Rio Games after a strong performance at the final qualifying and test event.
Victor or not, she is hero for charting new territory and bringing gymnastics closer to all of us Indians! You go girl!
Mabika learned judo at a UNICEF refugee center that she grew up in from the age of 10, after she was separated from her family. She joined Congo’s national team in her teens. Her hardships did not end there, as her coach starved them if they didn’t win.
After seeking asylum in Brazil, and working odd jobs, she once again found hope as her story was picked up by a journalist that helped her find a coach and get back to her love of judo. Mabika will also compete under the Olympic flag as part of the ten-strong refugee team in Rio.
To read about many more women stars at Rio: Click this link below
The Theme song for #rio2016.