Husband: Nikul Patel
Age: 34 Years
Profession: Table Tennis Player
Some Lesser Known Facts About Bhavina Patel
Bhavina Patel is an Indian para table tennis player who became the first Indian to secure a medal at the Paralympics when she entered the semifinals after she defeated world number 5 Borislava Peric Rankovic of Serbia in the women’s singles Class 4 event on 26 August 2021 at the 2020 Tokyo Paralympics.
Bhavina has won many gold, silver, and bronze medals for India in 28 international events including world championships.
Bhavina Patel belongs to Sundhiya near Vadnagar, the same taluka where Prime Minister Narendra Modi grew up.
Bhavina grew up in Mehsana, Gujarat, where her family owned a small cutlery kiosk.
When Bhavina was just one year old, she suffered from polio that affected her entire lower body. According to Bhavina, he got Polio from another medication that she used to take for an illness.
Although her family was disheartened by the illness, during this difficult period in her life, they stood by her.
In 2004, Bhavina, along with her family, moved to Ahmedabad from her native village Sundhiya in Mehsana district of Gujarat.
Reportedly, Bhavina wanted to become a teacher, and when she was rejected in an interview for her physical disability, her father, Hasmukhbhai Patel, decided to enroll her in the ITI course after he came across an advertisement from the Blind People’s Association, an award-winning institution for the specially-abled in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, and since her joining the association in 2007, Bhavina has never looked back.
While studying at BPA, Bhavina developed an interest in the sport of table tennis.
In 2011, she secured the ranking of World Number 2, after she won Silver Medal for India in The Individual Category at the PTT Thailand Table Tennis Championship.
In October 2013, Bhavina won another Silver medal at the Asian Para table tennis championships held in Beijing in the women’s singles Class 4 category.
In August 2017, she won the bronze medal in International Table Tennis Federation Asian Para Table Tennis Championship held in Beijing, she defeated Korean player Kang by 3-0 in the Women’s Singles Class 4 Category.
In 2021, Bhavina became the first Indian female table tennis player to qualify for the Paralympics when she qualified for the 2020 Tokyo Paralympics. Earlier, in 2016, she also clinched a berth for the 2016 Rio Paralympics; however, she could not compete at that time as the Board failed to fill up a form.
Para Athlete Bhavina Patel to start campaign for #India in the Para Table Tennis event from 25th of August. Departed today with lots of enthusiasm and hopes to give her best for the country@Media_SAI @MIB_India@ianuragthakur @tapasjournalist pic.twitter.com/oR45mVBr1N
— DD News (@DDNewslive) August 18, 2021
Sonalben Patel, also from Gujarat, joined Bhavina as India’s participants in table tennis events at the 2020 Tokyo Paralympics, where they paired up for the women’s doubles event.
✈️ Destination Tokyo
Tokyo #Paralympics Contingent comprising of Bhavina Patel & Sonalben Patel to leave for Tokyo today from IGI Airport, Delhi
PCI President @DeepaAthlete will accompany the Contingent to Tokyo to support & motivate our Para Athletes#Cheer4India#Praise4Para pic.twitter.com/UGqeO8mdA5
— SAI Media (@Media_SAI) August 18, 2021
According to Bhavina, it was always her dream to play in the Paralympics. She says,
To play in Paralympics has been a dream of mine, this dream did not even let me sleep.”
Without my family’s support, this would have been impossible and my parents are nothing less than God to me.”
On 26 August 2021, Bhavina knocked out Rio Paralympic Gold medalist and world number 5 Borislava Peric Rankovic of Serbia in the women’s singles Class 4 event to enter the semifinals at the 2020 Tokyo Paralympics; Bhavina beat her Serbian opponent 11-5 11-6 11-7 in a quarterfinal match that lasted 18 minutes. After this win, Bhavina said,
I could win my semifinal match due to the support of the people of India. Please keep supporting me so that I can win my semifinal match.”
Reportedly, Bhavina has secured a job with the Employees’ State Insurance Corporation (ESIC) in the sports quota.
According to Bhavina, a sportsperson’s strength lies in the mind, not the body. She says,
You need to train your mind to be victorious. Then everything falls into place. Whether you are disabled or not, I would give the same advice: Never ever underestimate yourself. Each one has a unique talent, which can be brought out and honed.”