As the Tokyo Olympics come to an in depth, PTI takes a have a look at the medallists and those that got here inside touching distance of glory however could not fairly make it to the rostrum.
Neeraj Chopra: Gold
They say save the very best for final and for India it got here true on the Tokyo Games. Javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra grew to become solely the second Indian to win a person gold within the Olympics.
After romanticising tales about “nearly there” for years, India lastly had its first track-and-field medal winner, because of Chopra’s throw of 87.58m.
Interestingly, Chopra, the son of a farmer from Khandra village close to Panipat in Haryana, took to athletics to reduce weight.
One day, his uncle took him to Shivaji Stadium in Panipat for some working. But Chopra wasn’t occupied with it and virtually immediately fell in love with javelin throw when he noticed just a few seniors practising on the stadium.
The 23-year-old, a Subedar with 4 Rajputana Rifles within the Indian Army, has been a constant performer since bursting into the scene with a historic gold within the junior world championships in 2016 with an Under-20 world document of 86.48m which nonetheless stands.
His different achievements embody gold medals within the 2018 Commonwealth Games and the Asian Games, moreover the highest end within the 2017 Asian Championships.
Mirabai Chanu: Silver
The pint-sized weightlifter from Manipuri lifted the spirits of your entire nation as she ended a 21-year watch for a medal in weightlifting, clinching a silver medal within the 49kg class to open India’s account on the very first day of competitions on July 24.
Wearing gold earrings formed just like the Olympic rings, which had been a present from her mom who bought her personal jewelry for them 5 years in the past, the 26-year-old lifted a complete of 202kg (87kg+115kg), lastly exorcising the ghosts of her disastrous outing within the 2016 Rio Games the place she had didn’t log a single legit carry.
Born to a poor household in Nongpok Kakching village about 20 kilometres from Imphal, Chanu’s childhood was spent slicing and accumulating wooden from the close by hills, hauling them up by herself, and fetching water from close by ponds in milk powder cans.
The 2017 world champion had initially needed to be an archer however destiny had completely different plans, and studying about fellow Manipuri the legendary N.Kunjarani Devi’s exploits within the weightlifting enviornment everywhere in the world, impressed Chanu to take up the game.
Ravi Dahiya (L) in motion
Ravi Dahiya: Silver
The 23-year-grappler born within the Nahri village of the Sonepat district in Haryana stormed to the ultimate of the boys’s 57kg freestyle occasion with none fuss. Although, he fetched a silver, his immense power and stamina together with technical prowess impressed every body.
Born to a farming household, Dahiya is a product of the nationwide capital’s Chhatrasal Stadium, which has already given India two Olympic medallists — Sushil Kumar and Yogeshwar Dutt.
He rose to prominence solely when he certified for the Tokyo Games with a bronze medal-winning effort on the 2019 world championship. He has steadily robe in stature ever since, profitable the Asian Championship in 2020 after which defending the title this yr.
His father, Rakesh Kumar, would himself carry milk and butter to Chhatrasal Stadium, about 60km away from his house, each single day with out fail to make sure that his son obtained the very best eating regimen.
PV Sindhu: Bronze
One of the strongest medal contenders heading to the Tokyo Olympics, PV Sindhu delivered as soon as once more. This time snatching a bronze.
The 26-year-old etched her identify among the many all-time greats after profitable girls’s singles bronze medal so as to add to the silver she received at Rio de Janeiro 5 years again. She grew to become the primary Indian lady and second general from the nation to attain the feat.
Such was her dominance on the Tokyo Games that she dropped solely two video games, each within the semifinal loss to Tai Tzu Ying, in six matches.
The Hyderabad shuttler rose to fame on the worldwide degree in 2014 when she received bronze medals on this planet championship, Asian Games, Commonwealth Games and Asian Championships.
One of probably the most constant performers, Sindhu has returned with medals from every one of many big-ticket occasions she has participated in.
Men’s hockey group: Bronze
Four many years of ache and disappointment was washed away because the Indian males’s hockey group clinched the bronze, the nation’s twelfth Olympic medal within the sport that got here after a spot of 41 years.
It wasn’t gold but it surely was sufficient to spearhead the revival of the game in a rustic that attaches a lot sentimental worth to it.
After the preliminary hiccup which noticed the group being steam-rolled 1-7 by Australia of their second recreation, Manpreet Singh and his males made a powerful comeback solely dropping to eventual champions Belgium.
While Manpreet impressed the group together with his management, goalkeeper PR Sreejesh had an exceptional event, standing like a wall when the opposition mounted an assault.
It appeared the group was destined to win. How else may one clarify the addition of Simranjeet Singh, who scored a brace within the essential bronze playoff, when he wasn’t even part of the unique squad and had been added following the International Olympic Committee’s choice to permit “alternate athletes” in group occasions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Lovlina Borgohain (L) in motion
Lovlina Borgohain: Bronze
Competing in her maiden Olympics, Borgohain carved a distinct segment for herself within the historical past of Indian girls’s boxing by clinching a bronze — India’s lone boxing medal on the Tokyo Games.
The 23-year-old, who was introduced up in Baro Mukhia village of Assam’s Golaghat district, was once a kickboxer, like her two elder sisters, earlier than she turned to boxing.
A day earlier than she was to go away with the Olympic-bound boxers group for a coaching camp to Europe, Borgohain had contracted COVID-19. But the missed alternative could not cease her from having a exceptional marketing campaign during which she upstaged former world champion Nien-Chin Chen of Chinese Taipei within the 69kg class.
With the feat, she grew to become solely the third Indian boxer ever, after Vijender Singh and MC Mary Kom, to complete on the rostrum on the quadrennial showpiece.
Bajrang Punia: Bronze
A favorite heading into the Games, Bajrang did not fairly reside as much as the sky-high expectations of turning into the primary Indian wrestler to win the gold, however the 27-year-old did return from Tokyo with a bronze medal, a formidable feat in a nation starved for achievement on the grandest sporting spectacle.
Bajrang has been enthusiastic about wrestling since childhood, and why not, the game runs in his blood. His father and elder brother, too, had been ardent practitioners of the game.
As a child all he needed was to wrestle. Once at a Dangal, when he was about 34kg, Bajrang insisted that he be allowed to wrestle however the competitors was meant for many who weighed about 60kg and to the amazement of everybody, he pinned his opponent, giving a glimpse of his willpower.
Those who had been so shut but up to now:
Women’s hockey group:
From a bottom-place end at Rio 2016, the Indian girls’s group capped a exceptional journey at Tokyo Olympics, ending a creditable fourth.
Although the group’s dream of securing its maiden Olympic medal remained unfulfilled because it misplaced 3-4 to Great Britain within the intently contested bronze medal play-off, the aspect recorded its greatest ever end on the Games.
After three losses on the trot, everybody had written them off. But a second of brilliance by skipper Rani Rampal that led to a late strike by Navneet Kaur within the recreation towards Ireland saved the group’s quarterfinal hopes alive.
A win towards South Africa, that noticed Vandana Kataria strike a hat-trick, and a beneficial end result helped guarantee India’s passage to the quarterfinal, the place drag flick specialist Gurjit Kaur rose to the event when it mattered probably the most, changing a PC towards the mighty Australians.
With the chances stacked firmly towards them a courageous and decided girls’s group etched its identify within the historical past books by coming into its maiden Olympic semifinals.
After a formidable marketing campaign that noticed him race to the semifinals, Deepak Punia was solely 10 seconds away from a medal, however the 22-year-old debutant ended up conceding a take-down within the 86kg freestyle bronze medal play-off.
Wrestling was only a route that Deepak hoped would discover him a great job to assist maintain his household. He was supplied the submit of a sepoy within the Indian Army again in 2016 however was instructed to dream massive and never accept little issues.
He took the recommendation of two-time Olympic medallist Sushil Kumar significantly and has regularly made his mark. He grew to become a World Cadet champion in 2016 and in 2019 received the junior World title, solely the fourth Indian ever to take action.
Aditi Ashok captured the creativeness of your entire nation as sports activities lovers turned on their television units within the wee hours to look at golf, attempting their hardest to know the ideas of the sport.
Ranked 200 on this planet, the 23-year-old from Bengaluru competed toe-to-toe towards the very best golfers on this planet. But, alas it wasn’t meant to be as after coming agonisingly shut, Aditi completed fourth.
Aditi began taking part in golf on the age of 5. At the Rio Olympics, the place she completed forty first, Aditi was the youngest participant.
She had her father as caddie in Rio whereas it was her mom becoming a member of her in Tokyo.