Voice from the Rooftop

Blog of Vincent Augustine D'Souza

India and Rio Olympics

India won three medals in Beijing Olympics 2008; one gold and two bronze. India won six medals in London Olympics 2012; two silver and four bronze. Some predicted India will win 12 medals in Rio Olympics. India sent the largest ever contingent to Rio and the expectation was that India will win more than six medals. India’s women’s hockey team qualified after 36 reasons and was the main reason for India’s contingent going beyond 100.
It was disappointment for India day after day. In previous three Olympics India had at least one medal in shooting. This time it was zero. India had three men in boxing. All three failed to win a medal. There was no woman boxer this time. Last time Sushil Kumar had won silver medal and Yogeshwar Dutt bronze medal in wrestling. This time men did not win any medal in wrestling.
Indians failed in archery, rowing, tennis, weightlifting and so on. In men’s doubles and women’s doubles in tennis, Indians were out in the first round. In mixed doubles, Rohan Bopanna and Sania Mirza lost in semi-final and bronze medal play-off.
Day after day it was bad news for India. On the 12th day Sakshi Malik won bronze in wrestling. India had something to cheer about.
In badminton there was one bronze medal last time. This time it was silver. P. V. Sindhu won silver in badminton. P. V. Sindhu versus Karolina Marin was the most watched singles match in India.
Most Indian athletes failed to achieve their personal best in Rio. That raises a question mark about measuring time and distance in India. Are the timings and distances manipulated to show athletes are good enough to take part in Olympics?
Inderjeet Singh and Narsingh Yadav failed dope tests. Inderjeet Singh did not go to Rio. Narsingh Yadav’s case had many twists. First there was case against him by Sushil Kumar for representing India in 74 kg category. Narsingh Yadav won the case in Delhi High Court. Sushil Kumar did not appeal in Supreme Court. Then Narsingh Yadav failed dope test. He cried conspiracy. Praveen Rana was chosen to represent India.
Narsingh Yadav got support from WFI President Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh and some politicians. PM Modi wanted to know what happened. One wrestler was arrested for spiking Narsingh Yadav’s drink. Narsingh Yadav appealed to NADA. NADA was to give its verdict on a Saturday at 7 p.m. That was postponed to Monday evening. NADA cleared Narsingh Yadav. He flew to Rio.
WADA appealed against NADA to CAS. CAS declared Narsingh Yadav guilty and banned him for four years w.e.f. 18/8/2016. Narsingh Yadav had to leave Rio. India went unrepresented in 74 kg category. WFI was unprepared for WADA appeal and CAS ruling. It was foolish for WFI officials not to expect WADA to appeal, and CAS to hear the appeal before Narsingh Yadav’s bout.
From six medals in London to two medals in Rio it was a great let down. It seems people in Government of India expected 11-15 medals. May be they thought athletes who had won medals previously will win again and some other athletes will win medals. India could not reach even Beijing tally of three medals.
A few months before Olympics there was change of Sports Minister. Sarbananda Sonowal became CM of Assam. Vijay Goel became Sports Minister. He went to Rio. He broke protocol. His staff members did not follow rules. Rio Olympic Committee warned him of cancelling his accreditation.
USA Government does not spend money on sports. American athletes are toppers in Olympics. Some of them win multiple medals. USA does not have a sports ministry. India should abolish sports ministry and stop government funding to sports. In Rio our athletes stayed in Olympic Village. Some officials stayed in hotel room costing 21,000 rupees per day.
Sponsors should concentrate on events where athletes can win multiple medals. In hockey 16 players are selected. If they win all matches they will get one gold medal which has not happened since 1980. If they lose in final they get a silver medal. Bronze medal is possible after losing in semi-final. Instead of spending money on hockey team that money can be spent on 16 different athletes who will compete in multiple events. One athlete can compete in 100m, 200m, 400m and 800m. Second athlete can compete in 5,000m and 10,000m. Other athletes can compete in multiple events in aquatics, athletics, shooting and gymnastics.

Updated: August 23, 2016 — 8:14 am

2 Comments

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  1. this is a superb post….and the most honest one…while there is so much money announced to Sakshi and Sindhu why dont these people motivate before the Olympics? We need more preparation thats the point.

  2. Awesome we learnt many things.thank you

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