The shadow of this deadly virus has not been removed from the world even at the time of the start of the Games being delayed by a year due to the Corona epidemic. Tokyo, one of the world’s most densely populated cities, is hosting thousands of sportspersons, support staff and officials while more than a thousand corona cases are being reported here every day. Eyes will be on medals in wrestling, shooting, boxing.
Only minor of these are related to sports, but they are enough to create fear in the minds of the participants. These games, being held in a strange environment, have neither spectators nor the enthusiasm that reflects the spirit of the Olympics. The International Olympic Committee is trying its best to focus only on the positive aspects, seeing these Games as hope.
Opening Ceremony on 23rd July
IOC President Thomas Bach said on Wednesday night, ‘This is a recipe for dealing and facing the crisis. This message of hope will turn into a message of confidence after the Games. With the opening ceremony on Friday, this Maha Kumbh of the Games, which will run till August 8, will begin. Bach is sure that this will be an occasion of joy and especially relief.
So far only 28 medals in the name of India
Talking about India, the country with a population of more than one billion 300 million has only 28 Olympic medals in its name. India participated in the Olympics for the first time in 1900 and so far in the individual category only Abhinav Bindra has been able to win the yellow medal which he won with precision shooting at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
biggest party in indian history
This time India has sent 120 players out of which 68 are men and 52 are women. The hopes of winning a double-digit medal for the first time are tied to the Indian contingent, with 15 shooters being the top contenders, who have achieved great success at the international level in the last two years. 19-year-old Manu Bhaker, 20-year-old Elavenil Valarivan, 18-year-old Divyansh Singh Panwar and 20-year-old Aishwarya Pratap Singh Tomar are among India’s medal hopefuls.
Mirabai and Bhavani Devi amazing
On the one hand, India has a big shooting team, and on the other hand, two heroines will descend as single warriors. Mirabai Chanu in 49 kg in weightlifting and CA Bhavani Devi, who created history by qualifying in fencing. Chanu could not do a single valid lift in the 2016 Rio Olympics, since then she won gold at the World Championships 2017, Commonwealth Games 2018 and also holds the world record of clean and jerk. Bhavani surprised everyone by qualifying for the Olympics in a sport like fencing.
high hopes from archers
There are also hopes from the archery team led by the world’s number one archer Deepika Kumari. Deepika is trying her best to forget the bitter memories of the London Olympics with a good performance where she failed miserably by landing as the world’s number one archer. She is also a medal contender in the mixed team category along with her husband Atanu Das.
Strong team of boxing and wrestling
In boxing, the expectations will be from Amit Panghal (52kg), six-time world champion MC Mary Kom (51kg) and former Asian Games champion Vikas Krishan (69kg). On the other hand, among the eight wrestlers, Bajrang Punia (65kg) and Vinesh Phogat (53kg) have been doing well for the past three years. Deepak Poonia (86kg) could prove to be Chhede Rustom who won a silver medal at the 2019 World Championships.
National game also expected from hockey
Indian hockey, which has been waiting for an Olympic medal for the last four decades, has hopes from both the women’s and men’s teams. India won its eighth and last Olympic gold in 1980 and for the first time in all these years, the team has raised real hopes.
India is no less in racket games
Achant Sharath Kamal and Manika Batra can do wonders in table tennis. In badminton, world champion PV Sindhu is a strong contender to win her second Olympic medal. After Rio’s silver, his eyes are on gold in Tokyo. Veteran tennis player Sania Mirza is playing for the fourth time in the Olympics and will be competing with Ankita Raina in doubles.
Competition in athletics, horse riding and swimming
In track and field, Neeraj Chopra or Tejinder Singh Toor can allay the regret of PT Usha or the late Milkha Singh for winning medals by a small margin in the Olympics. For the first time in horse riding, Fauwad Mirza will play for India in the Olympics. In swimming too, India’s Sajan Prakash and Srihari Natraj managed to make it to the Olympic A qualification mark for the first time.