“Cholaaa!” exulted 10-year-old Diya Chitale every time she won a point. The girl from Arya Vidya Mandir won her maiden Under-12 MSSA-MI table tennis title, beating city’s top-seed Aditi Sinha, of DG Khetan’s, 11-9 11-6 11-8 at the University pavilion on Saturday.
What makes her win over Aditi commendable is that she played the final with a sprained ankle.
“My aim was to play well. I’m just very happy, though the win has to still sink in. Aditi played really well,” Diya said.
So what does Diya’s triumphant cry “cholaa” mean? “I don’t know what it means but I know it unsettles the opponents. It is something I learnt on TV.” A keen follower of Arjuna awardee Kamlesh Mehta and current India No. 2, Sanil Shetty, Diya said, “My first goal is to be No. 1 in Mumbai, and then I’ll think about bigger goals.”
Diya’s rise hasn’t been easy. “She trains for 3-5 hours every day,” said her mother, Reshma.
“Whenever she gets free time, she runs to play.”
Source : DNA