India never got a medal - let alone a Gold - in any athletic or field and track event, with Milkha Singh and PT Usha’s two fourth-place finishes being the closest the country got to the podium.
Tokyo Olympics: India ended the Tokyo Olympics with a record seven medals, including a Gold medal – the first for India in athletics. But what does this mean for India’s trajectory in sports from now on? The first impact that the Tokyo Olympics will have on the Indian sports is a healing effect. Since the Olympics began, India never got a medal – let alone a Gold – in any athletic or field and track event, with Milkha Singh and PT Usha’s two fourth-place finishes being the closest the country got to the podium, according to a report in IE. Now, though, Neeraj Chopra’s medal in Javelin throw not only got the country a place on the podium in this area, but also made the National Anthem play at the event. Getting a medal in athletics is not an unfulfilled dream any more, and 23-year-old Chopra has now given athletes in India a legacy and a precedent.
With the Men’s Hockey Team bagging a Bronze medal – the first Olympic medal in the sport in over four decades – and the Women’s Hockey Team reaching just close to it, the sport could see a second wave of glory that has been long lost. The lack of meda in hockey for the past four decades has been a sore spot for India, especially because the Indian Men’s Hockey team holds the record for most number of Golds won in Olympics – eight. However, it can now be hoped that the sport would revive in India.
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Mirabai Chanu winning a Silver medal in weightlifting has broken a 21-year-long drought spell that followed Karnam Malleswari’s Bronze. Mirabai overcame hurt as well as injuries to take India to new heights as she brought India’s second medal in the sport at the Olympics, and the highest one so far. The sport has been facing a dwindling past in the country, but Mirabai’s inspiring win could set the ball rolling for numerous others in India who wish to pursue this sport.
Boxer Lovlina Borgohain followed in the footsteps of Mary Kom and won a Bronze for the country due to her technique, composure as well as tactical awareness. She also displayed the ability to not give up even when the opponent came with a better reputation. Though Mary Kom did a lot to bring boxing into limelight in India, it was beginning to slither away. However, with Lovlina’s win, boxing could get another chance to emerge in the country.
Since the 2008 Beijing Olympics, several world-class wrestlers have been emerging in the country. However, in order to sustain this trend, it was necessary for India to perform well in the sport at the Olympics, because a poor performance in the Olympics could lead to the sport fading away in the country. However, Bajrang Punia, with his Bronze medal, and Ravi Kumar with his Silver have kept the winning streak of the country going.
The same was also the case with Badminton and India. After Saina Nehwal won the first medal for India in the sport at Olympics with her Bronze in 2012, PV Sindhu kept the legacy running in 2016 Rio Olympics by getting a Silver. Though she could not get a Silver this year, she did keep the legacy running by bagging the Bronze, which would not only inspire others to take up the sport, but might also fuel her fire to complete the medal set in Paris 2024.