BENGALURU: An amazing series of performances by Indian diving athletes, led by triple jumpers Eldhose Paul and Abdulla Aboobacker and middle distance runners Avinash Sablehelping India to 12th place in athletics medal standings, sixth in total, and certainly no Olympic champion Neeraj Chopra not a big problem.
As an Indian team coach put it on the eve of the Olympics, Chopra’s victory in Tokyo thrilled some Indian athletes and also broke the mental barrier of the legendary partial pain. hundred seconds suffered by Milkha Singh and PT Usha. Instead, these athletes find an excess of energy to peak at the right time and create what’s best for them personally.
Be it Paul, who crossed the 17m for the first time in his life to win a triple jump gold medal, or Avinash Sable, who ended the Kenyan monopoly, Indian athletes have shown the world their talent. their ability.
There were others who didn’t make it, but fortunately young stars, including the likes of national records Jyothi Yarraji and pedestrians Priyanka Goswamiwho have excelled at the Birmingham Games, are keen to improve their best performance.
Another takeaway from the Olympics is the growing stature of India’s male athletes. So much so that Indian women have won only two of the country’s medals through Priyanka (silver, 10,000m walk) and Annu Rani (bronze, throwing javelin).
The men’s collection includes one gold (Paul), three silver alongside two bronze medals from Tejaswin Shankar and Sandeep Kumar. The men’s silver medalists came from Kerala (M Sreeshankar, Aboobacker) and Maharashtra (Sable).
SRIRAM PRAISES ATHLETES
India’s hero at the 1976 Montreal Olympics Sriram Singh was excited after watching the Indians in action. “Neeraj’s gold medal has inspired confidence and raised awareness among not only the young athletes but also the parents. More children are now coming to the field and performing. Our performance at the Olympics shows that our athletes are very confident,” Singh told TOI from his hometown of Jaipur.
“The government is also trying to provide the best facilities and that also led to this amazing performance. It’s a great feat to finish 1-2 in the men’s triple jump.” he added. “If Neeraj can win, then why can’t I do the same” is new thinking. There is more awareness and more athletes emerging. It also shows that our men can do just as well as we have depended more on our female athletes since the time of PT Usha. ”
Sriram wants the federation to build on this euphoria and focus more on rural and grassroots areas. “We need to build on this. The federation needs to focus on more and more young people. At the same time, we need to stop the spread of banned drugs at the grassroots level. Imagine, one of our medal winners get caught. If that happens unfortunately it will ruin the whole show.”