Indian para-badminton star, on the occasion of International Day of Girl Child, was celebrated by Barbie with a one-of-a-kind (OOAK) doll modelled to her likeness as a part of the Barbie SHEROES family. The 31-year-old was also named as one of the ‘Next Generation Leaders’ by Time Magazine earlier this week. Manasi Joshi’s rise to the very top of the sporting world is an inspiration for every young girl around the globe.

The Barbie OOAK doll celebrates all extraordinary women who inspire girls around the world to be anything they dream of. Manasi Joshi joins a celebrated and diverse group of SHEROES such as Naomi Osaka, Frida Khalo, Nicola Adams Obe, Madison De Rozario and Sumeyye Boyaci. 'it's incredible to have an OOAK Barbie Doll modeled after me.' said Manasi Joshi.

Apart from being a successful para-athlete, Manasi Joshi is also a software engineer. Joshi played badminton as a part of her rehabilitation after a motorbike accident in 2011 and following fellow para-badminton player Neeraj George's suggestion she took up the sport professionally again.

Manasi Joshi won the BWF Para-Badminton World Championship in 2019 and currently holds the place as World No. 2 in SL3 Singles (Women's Singles). ‘Sports helped me break stereotypes, I now want to use that experience to be an enabler for others,’ Joshi had told the TIME magazine.

After having a doll modelled after her, Manasi Joshi feels that this kind of representation can have a positive impact on young children, especially young girls. ‘I think it is an immense honour for me to have a doll modelled to my likeness. To be a part of the SHEROES family after Dipa Karmakar,’ Joshi told News18 in an exclusive interview.

‘When a person with a disability looks at the doll, who has not been able to shatter the stereotype associated with the disability and as a woman, be it from any race, colour and culture, they can see that they can do it too or anybody can do it. Once they grow up, they will realise that anything is possible,’ she added.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Oct 11, 2020 08:10 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website