The Tokyo Olympics are all set to begin on July 23. Delayed by a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the International Olympic Committee is all set to conduct the Games, even if it means not having an audience.
This event will be an acid test for India. Can they break the double-digit barrier when it comes to Olympic medals?
The Tokyo Olympics is the perfect opportunity for Indian athletes to make their mark. Ironically, the sport which gave India their first-ever Olympic medal is yet to see an independent Indian climb the podium for the same. Even more ironic is the fact that para-athletes have brought more medals in this discipline than any able-bodied athlete has ever managed to do so.
In Paris in 1900, Norman Pritchard, an Anglo-Indian athlete, won India's first and only medal in Olympic athletics. Since then, there have been many Indians who came agonizingly close to winning but were unable to climb the podium.
Be it Henry Rebello injuring his hamstring or Milkha Singh tragically slowing down at the crucial curve of 250m, India have had their fair share of letdowns. But the Tokyo Olympics is probably the best opportunity in years to put an end to that mess.
As of now, the following Indians have made the cut for athletics at the Tokyo Olympics:
1) Sandeep Kumar - Men's 20 km racewalk
2) Rahul Rohilla - Men's 20 km racewalk
3) Irfan Kolothum Thodi - Men's 20 km racewalk
4) Priyanka Goswami - Women's 20 km racewalk
5) Bhawna Jat - Women's 20 km racewalk
6) Avinash Sable - Men's 3000 m steeplechase
7) Indian Mixed 4x400 m. relay team
8) Naib Subedar Neeraj Chopra - Men's javelin throw
9) Shivpal Singh - Men's javelin throw
10) Murali Shreeshankar - Men's long jump
11) Kamalpreet Kaur - Women's Discus Throw