After two weeks of watching the half-month long global celebration of sport with all its myriad emotions, the Games finally came to an end with a dazzling ceremony, leaving us with memories and lots of analysis to do. The Olympics for us this year had a couple of bright spots and a fair share of disappointments. But it is only error that makes us human, isn't it?
India finished 67th in the medals tally as compared to 55th of last time. The general consensus before the Games was between six to eight medals, but we finished with two. There was the feel of a 14-day festival with people watching and cheering the contingent from time to time. The last few days had seen fans in various corners of the country displaying the Indian flag. There was no doubt that, as the Olympics progressed, a deep-rooted nationalism was out in the open again, but it was a nationalism that was cheerful; not boorish.
Although India’s show had its poor moments from the expected quarters, given the fabulous, picturesque host in eventful Rio de Janeiro, we were in for some mesmerizing displays by our contingent.
1) Manoj Kumar stuns 2012 Olympic bronze-medalist
Manoj Kumar (64 kg) defeated ex-Olympic bronze medalist Evaldas Petrauskas in a hard-fought encounter to enter the pre-quarterfinals of the Rio Games. But he faced tough competition from Uzbekistan boxer Fazliddin Gaibnazarov in the Round of 16 and lost 0-3.
2) Indian women’s hockey team fight back with a 2-2 draw against Japan
The Sushila Chanu-led side was heading for a defeat after conceding two goals against a resilient Japan in the first match of the tournament. But they came back strongly in the third quarter, courtesy goals from Rani Rampal and Lilima Minz to swing the tide against a higher-ranked opponent.