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Indian Olympic Association expecting 15 medals at 2016 Rio Games, says General Secretary

The general secretary has projected Saina Nehwal and Jitu Rai among others top medal contenders.

News 29 Jun 2016, 18:29 IST
India will be sending a contingent of more than 100 athletes at 2016 Rio games

In a development that is likely to surprise a lot of people in the Indian sports fraternity, the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) has said that it is expecting around 15 medals from the contingent going to participate in the Rio de Janeiro games. Rajeev Mehta, General Secretary of IOA, said that he was really happy with the way things are going as far as the 2016 Rio Olympics are concerned and believes this edition will bring unprecedented success.

Present in New Delhi to announce that Amul will be the official sponsor of the Indian contingent going to Brazil, the IOA expressed its happiness at the fact that more than 100 athletes will be representing the country and predicted a massive medal tally, which would surpass what we have achieved at previous editions. Speak to the media, Mehta said, “We are expecting a lot of medals from the Rio Olympic contingent.

“Saina Nehwal (badminton), Jitu Rai (shooting), Sania Mirza and Rohan Bopanna (tennis), Vikas Krishan Yadav (Boxing) and men’s hockey team are top medal contenders for India. We are also expecting medals from Yogeshwar Dutt and others from the wrestling contingent. There is a lot of buzz going on at the moment and we are delighted to have so much support from the nation,” he said.

The 2016 Rio Olympics will see an unprecedented participation from India in terms of the number of athletes that will be going. With a significant increase from the 2012 London Games (83), India will be represented by more than a 100 athletes and the general secretary said the count could go up to 115. “Around 102-103 have already qualified and with some selection processes still left, we think the number could go up to 115. We expect representation in golf and aquatics as well,” he added.

There has been a lot of talk about the Zika virus and it has been a matter of concern for several nations sending their contingents at the 2016 Rio Games. Talking about the same, Mehta said, “We have consulted a team of experts and all possible measures are being taken to ensure that none of the athletes’ health is affected. We will be briefing our athletes about what precautions they should take while being in Brazil.”

The 2016 Rio Games are being talked about at great length in India and that means only good news for the country’s sporting fraternity. Whether or not India manages to get the medal tally the IOA is expecting it to deliver only time will tell but to even think that the contingent can manage such a tally is a positive sign.

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