Dhanalakshmi Sekar is an Indian athlete who competes in 100 metres, 200 metres, and 4 X 100 metres relay events. She has won several medals in various national and international competitions. In 2022, she failed a dope test and was banned for 3 years.
Dhanalakshmi Sekar was born on Friday, 5 June 1998 (age 24 years; as of 2022) in Gundur, Tiruchirapalli, Tamil Nadu. Her zodiac sign is Gemini. She studied at the Abbot Marcel R.C. Higher Secondary School, Sembattu, Tiruchirapalli. Later, she attended Alva’s college in Moodbidri, Karnataka and pursued a diploma in Arts. After completing her diploma, she attended Bharathidasan University in Tiruchirapalli, Tamil Nadu to pursue graduation. During her college, she took up sports to get a government job under the sports quota and alleviate her family from poverty.
A childhood photo of Dhanalakshmi Sekar
Height (approx.): 5′ 2″
Weight (approx.): 50 kg
Hair Colour: Black
Eye Colour: Black
She comes from a Tamil family.
Parents & Siblings
Her father’s name was Sekar, and her mother’s name is Usha. Her father passed away during her childhood, and her mother did farming and worked as a domestic labourer to provide for the family. She had 2 sisters; however, one of her sisters passed away in 2021 due to health issues.
Dhanalakshmi Sekar’s mother, Usha
Husband & Children
She is unmarried.
She is single.
She started training in Athletics during her college after Tamil Nadu sprinter Manikandan Arunmugam, who was impressed by her natural speed, convinced her that she can get a government job after getting medals in the sport. She competes in 100 metres, 200 metres, and relay events. She started participating in the athletic championships in 2017, and in 2018, she won third place in 100 metres and 200 metres in the 2018 Tamil Nadu State Championships. In 2019, she represented India at the 2019 Summer Universiade held in Naples, Italy. She won several medals in the athletic championships and qualified for the mixed 4 X 400 metres relay event of the 2020 Olympics held in Tokyo, Japan; however, she was not selected for the team. She participated in the Tokyo Olympics 2020 as a reserve player. She made a name for herself by beating top-ranked Indian athletes Hima Das and Dutee Chand in the 2021 Federation Cup held in Patiala. In June 2022, she won gold in the 200 metres event with her personal best time of 22.89 seconds in the Qosanov Memorial Athletics Meet.
Dhanalakshmi Sekar with her trainer Manikandan Arunmugam (right)
- 2018: Moodbidri Inter-University Championships, Moodbidri in 200 metres
- 2019: Regional Championships, Tiruchirapalli in 100 metres
- 2019: Meeting d’Athlétisme de Pézenas, Pezenas, France in 200 metres
- 2019: Regional Championships, Tiruchirapalli in 200 metres
- 2019: Inter-State Championships, Lucknow in 4 X 100 metres relay
- 2021: Tamil Nadu State Meet, Sivakasi in 100 metres
- 2021: Federation Cup, Patiala in 100 metres
- 2021: National Inter State Senior Athletics Championships, Patiala in 100 metres
- 2021: Tamil Nadu State Meet, Sivakasi in 200 metres
- 2021: Indian Grand Prix 4, Patiala in 4 X 100 metres relay
- 2021: National Inter State Senior Athletics Championships, Patiala in 4 X 100 metres relay
- 2022: Indian Grand Prix, Thiruvanthapuram in 200 metres
- 2018: Moodbidri Inter-University Championships, Moodbidri in 100 metres
- 2019: Indian Grand Prix 1, Patiala in 100 metres
- 2019: Meeting d’Athlétisme de Pézenas, Pezenas, France in 100 metres
- 2020: Indian University Championships, Moodbidri in 100 metres
- 2021: Federation Cup, Patiala in 200 metres
- 2021: Indian Grand Prix 4, Patiala in 200 metres
- 2018: Tirunelveli Tamil Nadu State Championships, Tirunelveli in 100 metres
- 2018: Tirunelveli Tamil Nadu State Championships, Tirunelveli in 200 metres
- 2019: Federation Cup, Patiala in 200 metres
Dhanalakshmi Sekar after winning bronze in the 2019 Federation Cup, Patiala in 200 metres
- 2019: Inter-State Championships, Lucknow in 200 metres
Banned for three years after testing positive for steroids
On 11 July 2022, she was banned for three years from participating in any tournament by the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) for failing an out-of-competition dope test. A sample was taken on 1 May 2022 in Antalya, Turkey where she was training. She tested positive for Metandienone, a prohibited substance under the category ‘Anabolic Androgenic Steroids.’ Initially, she was banned for four years; however, she admitted to doping following which the sanction was reduced by one year. Subsequently, she was left out of the selection for the 2022 Commonwealth games held in Birmingham. As a consequence of this ban, her wins, medals, awards, and cash prizes on and since 1 May 2022 were also nullified.
- During her initial college days, she played Kho Kho; however, when she did not see any great opportunity in the sport, she left it and took up athletics.
- Her best timing in 100 metres is 11.38 seconds and in 200 metres is 23.14 seconds.
- During the 200 metres race in the heat of the 24th Federation Cup held in 2021 in Patiala, she broke Indian athlete P. T. Usha‘s 23-year-old record by running 200 metres in 23.26 seconds.
- She is also known as Gundur Express.
- When she went to represent India in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, her sister died due to illness; however, her family kept this news from her so that her performance does not get affected. She only came to know about this when she returned home.
- She is supported by the JSW Sports organisation and has trained at Inspire Institute of Sport to train under French Coach Antony Yaich.