#RoadtoRio: India’s expected inroad on the medal standings

Image Credits: Rio 2016

With less than a hundred days left for the mother of all sporting events to begin and the Olympic flames having already reached the host nation Brazil, the big, hot debate in the national sporting arena is India’s chances of bettering its 2012 tally of six medals. The Sports Ministry has set a target of ’10 plus medals’ for this Summer Olympic Games and with the much talked about TOP (Target Olympic Scheme), India has a fair bit of chance to achieve this target.

With a total of 83 sportspersons having qualified for the Rio Olympics for various events, the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) is fielding the largest-ever contingent for the quadrennial Games and is expecting the total number of qualified athletes to be close to 100 before the qualification process comes to end. The qualified athletes have ensured country’s participation in nine disciplines, including Archery, Athletics, Boxing, Hockey, Gymnastics, Rowing, Shooting, Table Tennis and Wrestling.

According to sports pundits all over the nation, it is really not possible to approximate the number of medals but India will surely beat the London mark of six medals.

Let’s look at India’s prospective in all disciplines in which a podium finish is expected.

Shooting: Shooting has always been the area for India to bag medals in any multi nation sports event. India has won medals in shooting consecutively in the last three Olympic Games. Jitu Rai, Gagan Narang, Abhinav Bindra and Co. can create history on their day.

Predictions: 3-4 medals

Wrestling: India has a bright medal hope in the form of veteran Yogeshwar Dutt.  Narsingh Yadav, Sandeep Tomar and other grapplers also have the potential to wrestle their way to the podium.

Predictions: 1-2 medals

Boxing: Shiva Thapa appears to be a strong medal contender for India. Devendro Singh and Vikas Krishnan will also be keen to make it to Rio. India’s chance in Boxing brightens if M.C. Mary Kom and Sarita Devi qualify for the games.

Predictions: 1-2 medals

Archery: India’s hope lies on ace archer Deepika Kumari as she will look to remove the choker tag that has often been associated with her in big events like this. She along with Laxmirani Majhi and Rimil Buriuly form a tough recurve archery team to beat.

Predictions: 1 medal

Badminton: With the likes of Saina Nehwal, P.V. Sindhu and K Srikanth, the Indian Badminton contingent looks set for a medal haul. The deccan queens Saina and Sindhu are among the medal race and will face stiff competition from the Chinese counterpart whereas Srikanth will rely on his form in recent tournaments.

Predictions: 1-2 medals

The Indian Hockey Team gave a stellar display of some fine hockey in the recently concluded Azlan Shah Tournament by winning the silver medal and Dipa Karmakar created history by becoming the first woman to qualify for the Olympics.  Also, Sania Mirza has been in red hot form since quite a few months. So, it would not be a surprise if we are able to manage more medals out of Hockey, Lawn Tennis, Athletics or Gymnastics as well.

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