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Olympics: Athletes from around the world share their Olympic dreams

Having over a decade of experience in representing India in boxing, Nikhat Zareen28, to fend off blows from both inside and outside the ring. Between her early elimination for wanting to continue in a traditionally male-dominated sport and suffering a shoulder dislocation in 2017 that nearly ended her career, Zareen’s The road to sporting success has taken its fair share of knocks. But during a match, all of that fades into the background. “Every time I step into the ring,” says the two-time world champion, “my only thought is: Nikhat“You have to win this fight at all costs.” Sadaf Sheikh

Ge Manqi, Athletics, People’s Republic of China

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Samuel Gui Yang dress.

Photo: Zhen Zhang. Realization Echo Xiao. Haircut and beautification Yang Yi. Creative consultant Jumbo Tsui. Production C-Side and Huohuo.

Ge Manqi she’s accustomed to breaking boundaries: At the 2020 Tokyo Games, she became the first Chinese runner in nearly 40 years to qualify for the women’s 100 metres semifinals. Now, as she prepares for her appearance in Paris, Ge, 26, has a powerful message for watching in China and around the world. “I aim to pass on my positivity and insights to the next generation of athletes, so they can build on my success. I’m on a mission to help Chinese female runners reach new heights,” she says. “It’s a myth that Asians can’t be successful in running. Don’t limit yourself with preconceived ideas.” MM

Sha’Carri Richardson, Track and Field, USA

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Nike Team USA Olympic jersey.

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Sha’Carri Richardson her reputation speaks for itself. While the Paris Games will be her first Olympic appearance, the 24-year-old Texas-born athlete has proven herself as one of the fastest women in the world on several occasions. Consider just her performance at the 2023 World Athletics Championships in Budapest, where she set a new event record for the fifth-fastest 100-meter dash of 10.65 seconds, the fifth-fastest of all time. Such results are a function of talent and training, yes, but they are also a “24/7 lifestyle,” as Richardson puts it. “The track is part of my daily life. Everything I do — what I eat, what I drink, whether I stay up very late — it all reflects on the track. Every choice. That’s what the world doesn’t see.” MM

Artistic Swimming, Mexico

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Top row, left to right: Glenda Inzunza, Jessica Sobrino. Middle row: Nuria Diosdado, Regina Alférez, Itzamary González, Samanta Rodríguez, Daniela Estrada. Bottom row: Pamela Toscano, Joana Jiménez, Fernanda Arellano

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“Many of us have been together for more than 10 years – we see each other more than our own blood family,” he says Samantha RodriguezThe 29-year-old is a member of Mexico’s artistic swimming team, which will compete in the Olympics as a team for the first time since 1996 this summer. (Mexico, by the way, only qualified in the solo or duet events.) That focus has yielded some tremendous results: last year, after winning a silver medal at the 2023 World Aquatics Championships in Fukuoka, Japan, Mexico secured its place in Paris by winning two gold medals at the Pan-American Games in Santiago, Chile. “Qualifying for the Olympic Games means fulfilling a dream that Regina, 3, has seen so far,” adds another swimmer. Regina Alfredo26. And representing their country on the world stage? “Walking the Mexican flag inspires me every day,” he says Nuria Diosdado33. MM

Lo Chia-ling, Taekwondo, Chinese Taipei

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Photography by Troy Wang. Realization by Joey Lin. Hairstylist by Reeve Chen. Beautification and editing by Eddi-Sheng Hsu. Set design by Tung Yu Ting. Producer by Nelly Yang.