Renowned Indian women’s volleyball athletes

Indian women's volleyball athletes

Indian women’s volleyball players have traditionally worked very hard to rise to the top. The history of women’s volleyball in India dates back to the early 1950s. The early pioneers were Nirmal Saini, Zubeida Khalili, and a select few more volleyball players. Unfortunately, the women’s game didn’t really start to take shape until 1977–1978. Dipti Malik, a seasoned volleyball player, had a significant impact on the game. She oversaw the Indian Railways squad that won the inaugural senior volleyball title. Indian volleyball players were hired by the railways as a result of this triumph. The freedom to focus more on the sport allowed female volleyball players to enjoy financial security and stability. The Indian women’s volleyball athletes sqaud went on to enjoy success, particularly at the South Asian Games. A growing number of female volleyball players began to appear throughout time, some of whom worked extremely hard to rank among the greatest.

1. Nirmal Saini

A well-known former captain of the Indian women’s volleyball team is Nirmal Saini. On October 8, 1938, in Sheikhupura, Punjab, British India (current-day Pakistan), she was given the name Nirmal Kaur Saini. In 1958, Nirmal graduated with a Master’s in Political Science from Punjab University. Three different times, she served as the Punjab volleyball team’s captain. As a member of the UP volleyball team, she also went on tour to Ceylon (Sri Lanka) in 1955. She also competed for Punjab in 1956, where they won the National Championship in Patiala. In the competition, the team didn’t suffer a single defeat. She met her future husband, the renowned athlete Milkha Singh, that year while competing in the Indo-Ceylon Championship.

Nirmal also successfully steered an Indian team on their 1959 tour of Ceylon, winning every game. In an interview with Harmony, Nirmal claims that she always wore traditional attire when competing internationally: “I always wore salwar kameez when playing in international matches.” After getting married to Milkha in 1962, she gave up the sport to focus on her new marriage. Despite her resignation, the Punjab team she had been playing for held the top spot in India until 1963. Jeev Milkha Singh, an Indian professional golfer, is raised by his mother Nimal Saini. Her background in sports had to have had some impact on Jeev.

2. Zubeida Khalili

One of India’s most notable and innovative volleyball players was Zubeida Khalili. She was the first pro athlete of note to originate in Madras, Tamil Nadu, India. Zubeida later rose to the position of captain for the women’s team at the Pre-Olympics competition in Delhi. That happened in December 1963. She therefore created history by being the first woman to represent India in a significant international event. Zubeida traded mementos with the South East Asian team’s captain prior to a game versus Korea. Lakshmi, Renu Waalia, Mulini Reddy, Paramjit Kaur, and Lakshmi were a few of the players who participated with Zubeida.

The Indian team led by Zubeida finished last in the standings after the Pre-Olympic competition Yet, this international competition helped Indian women’s volleyball players gain recognition. The Madras squad that won the 12th (1962–63; Allahabad) and 13th(1964-65) National Championships featured Zubeida prominently. Visually, Zubeida appeared to be a beautiful and rather tall Indian volleyball player.

3. Saly Joseph

Saly Joseph was one of India’s most prominent female volleyball players. She was born in the Indian district of Kerala’s Kuppayakkodu. The sixth child and daughter of Karintholil Joseph and Thresiakutty is named Saly. Her athletic career began at St. Joseph’s High School in Kotancherry. She improved her performance after relocating to Providence College in Calicut. She holds a degree from Calicut University. She won two gold medals with Calicut in five Inter-University Championships during 1977–1978 and 1981–1982. During the 1980–81 season, she led her university’s team as captain.

Saly is regarded as one of the best players of the 1980s by many fans. Sally is referred to as “A Wonderful Volleyball Gift To Indian Volleyball” on a Facebook community page. She was well known on the volleyball court for her aggressiveness. She was a great spiker in addition to being a gorgeous hitter. Saly led Team India in important competitions. This includes the 1982 Asian Games at New Delhi, the 1981 Mexico Junior World Cup, and the 1982 Test matches against Sri Lanka. Between 1976–1977 (Calcutta) and 1986–1987, she won four gold medals at the national championships (Bangalore).

At the national competitions, Saly was a member of the women’s teams for Kerala and Syndicate Bank. At the gold-winning Kerala squad at the 1985–86 National Championships, she had some amazing teammates. They include Molly Thomas, Reji Antony, Geetha Valappil, and Leegemma Thomas. The outstanding volleyball player Stanley D. Levillard’s sister-in-law is Saly. Saly went on to win the Arjuna Award in 1984 for her exceptional sporting accomplishments.

4. Jagmati Sangwan

Former Indian female volleyball player Jagmati Sangwan was a pioneer in the sport. On January 2, 1960, she was born into a farming family in Butana Village, District Sonipat, Haryana, India. Initially, Jagmati attended the Butana Government Girls High School. The Devi Lal administration had established the Sports College for Women in Haryana in 1978, where she eventually completed her degree. The next step was to enroll in classes at the Hisar-based Haryana Agricultural University (HAU). Ultimately, she earned her Ph.D. in physical education from Rohtak’s Maharshi Dayanand University. Jagmanti competed in volleyball at the national level and represented India internationally. She competed for the Indian team that took home the bronze medal at the 1980 Asian Volleyball Championships in Seoul, South Korea.

She represented India in volleyball at the 1982 Asian Games in New Delhi as the country’s first female participant from Haryana. Lohithan Kunjusankaran discussed Jamati on the “Legends of Volleyball” Facebook page. “She is the best female volley ball player India has ever produced, in my opinion. She was a very combative fighter. She participated in nine National Volleyball Championships between 1977–78 (Calcutta) and 1985–86 (New Delhi). In the nationals, she served as Haryana’s captain. Human rights activist Jagmati thinks that athletics might help women become more powerful.

5. Varinder Lali Sandhu

The first female volleyball player from Punjab to represent India at the Asian Games is Varinder Lali Sandhu. She was created in Punjab, India’s Jalandhar. Varinder began playing volleyball while she was a student in Grade 8 at the Government Girls High School in Jalandhar. Later on, she attended HMV College in Jalandhar for her schooling. As team captain for the Guru Nanak Dev, Varinder won the 1980–81 All India Inter–University Championship in Amritsar.

Moreover, she and India won a bronze medal at the 1980 Junior Asian Championship. This was the Indian team’s first medal at the Asian level. She competed for India in the 1981 Junior World Cup in Mexico. She played a crucial role in Team India’s Test matches in Sri Lanka in 1982. She competed in the 1982 Delhi Asian Games in the same year. At five National Championships, she competed. Throughout the years 1978–1979 (Hyderabad) and 1982–1983, (Bhopal). Varinder won awards for “Best Player” in various All India and state-level competitions between 1979 and 1982. She was named the “Best Sports Lady” of Punjab in 1982. In 1970, Varinder received the Maharaja Ranjit Singh Award as well.

6. Priyanka Khedkar

Priyanka is a former star volleyball player from India. She rose to fame as the “Queen of Libero” while playing in a specialized position. On November 1, 1984, Priyanka Ashok Khedkar was born in Burhanpur, Madhya Pradesh, India. Ashok and Sandhya Khedkar are her parents. Swanand Khedkar is her only brother.

Excellent volleyball players were also her mother and brother. She started playing volleyball when she was just three years old. The beginning of her volleyball adventure was with Nagpur Club. She went to L.A.D. College in Nagpur and Somalwar High School. She competed as an attacker at a young age, winning gold at the Sub Junior Nationals. At the time, she was a member of Maharashtra State. She is the only female volleyball player from India to have competed in three straight Asian Games. This covers the Asian Games in 2010 (Guangzhou), 2014 (Incheon), and 2018 (Jakarta-Palembang). At the 2014 Lusofonia Games in Goa, India, she won a gold medal with Team India. Priyanka competed in the Indian team that won the gold medal at the 2016 South Asian Games. She competed in fifteen National Championships between Salem, 1999–2000, and 2019–2020. (Bhubaneswar). She spent nine years competing for Railways and won nine gold medals at the National Championships. She has also won the Federation Cup four times.

7. Priyanka Bora

India’s Priyanka Bora competes internationally in volleyball. The 178 cm tall global player was born on January 7, 1985, in Pune, Maharashtra, India. Her mother is Asha Bora, and her father is Premchand Bora. She is related to Dr. Abhijeet Bora. She graduated from SP College after attending the H.H.C.P School to further her education. Priyanka has participated in various junior and senior international volleyball competitions during the course of her twenty-year career. She won a gold at the sub-junior national level. At the South Asian Games in Colombo, Sri Lanka, in 2006, she captured her first noteworthy gold medal.

She also won the South Asian Games in Kathmandu-Pokhara, Nepal, in 2019.Priyanka had already been named the team’s captain for the 2009 Asian Championship. Vietnam hosted this occasion from September 5–13, 2009. She later participated in the Asian Games in Guangzhou, China, in 2010. After then, Priyanka joined the women’s national team on a regular basis. On November 25, 2010, Priyanka triumphed against the Maldives in the Asian Games match for ninth or tenth place. She won 17 of her 37 attempts, making her India’s “Best Scorer.” Priyanka competed in 17 National Championships between 2003–2004 (Davangere) and 2019–2020. (Bhubaneswar).

8. Aswani Kiran

Former Indian volleyball player and current team captain, Aswani Kiran. On May 15, 1985, she was born in Kallamballam, a neighborhood near Attingal in Kerala, India’s Thiruvananthapuram District. She worked as a trainee at GV Raja Sports School from 1988 to 2000. She then received training at the SAI (Sports Authority of India) Koland from 2001 to 2004 KJ Jose was her coach at the SAI. She has won two gold medals in the Junior Nationals. In the Youth National level, she has one further gold medal to her name. She participated in the Indian volleyball team that won a gold medal in the 10th South Asian Games in 2006. This happened from August 18 to August 28 in Colombo, Sri Lanka.

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