Wishes have flooded in on the occasion of the 56th birth anniversary of legendary track and field athlete PT Usha on Saturday. Usha, popularly known as the ‘Payyoli Express’, is widely regarded as the finest track athlete that the country has produced to date.

The legendary Indian star won medals throughout the course of her career but the 400 metres hurdles race at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics remains arguably one of the finest moments of her sporting career.

Usha came fourth by 1/100th of a second and narrowly missed out on the bronze medal. However, she never looked back and had a trophy-laden career.

It was at the 1985 Asian Championships in Jakarta, where she bagged five gold medals while claiming four more at the 1986 Asian Games. The sporting world saw her win many more medals before announcing her retirement in 2000.

Union Minister of Sports and Youth Affairs Kiren Rijiju was one of the first to extend wishes on her special day.

“Birthday greetings to the legend and India’s original ‘Golden Girl’ PT Usha. She is still contributing to Indian sports by providing training and coaching to young athletes. I pray for your good health and long life. @PTUshaOfficial,” he said on Twitter.

Meanwhile, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan also tweeted on the occasion.

“Warm greetings to renowned athlete, legendary Indian sprinter, former Olympian, our Padma Shri @PTUshaOfficial ji on her birthday. I pray to god to bless you with good health and long life,” he posted.