Rio Olympics, so far, has not been a happy affair for Indian athletes. The country is yet to open their accounts in the biggest sporting event. However, there is a silver lining for India.
Sports is an integral part of any nation and every country wishes to have a wide range of players and excel in various events. But for India, it was hockey when we won back to back medals (6 gold) at the Olympic Games from. the baton was then passed on to cricket with the winning of World Cup in 1983 and it has continued till date with legends like Sachin Tendulkar and the T20 World Cup 2007, World Cup 2011 and Champions Trophy 2012 victories keeping the sport intact with the nation.
With the rise of domestic cricket and IPL, cricket has unofficially become a nationwide sport which has attracted masses. And this in most ways affected other sports. Especially the tradition favorites like hockey, wrestling and kabaddi. This “Craze” for a single sport has not only subdued the existing sports but also didn’t allow other new sports to be accepted by the people.
In this Rio Olympics, even though we have a contingent of 124 athletes and a lot of hope on carrier players, some lesser players will surely have a very huge impact on the nation and its youth. Lets have a look at some players whose representation in the Rio Olympics itself is a moment of pride and a historical event. Read till the end and you will find the most talked athlete at the end!
Dattu Baban Bhokanal:
A name you might have never heard. But yes, he is making the nation pride as he enters today’s Sculls finals C competing for a world ranking of 13-18. He who performed far below his personal best has finished 4th in the qualification missing a chance of medal winning. He went on to finish the semis 2nd in a race which he lead till the final second just to lose by 0.14 seconds. Even though, he did not make much in the news, his presence was well felt with some inspiring feats and is expected to make an impact on the passionate youth interested in this sport, which is most dominated by the players from services and defense units.
This Judoka has created history by being the first Indian judoka at the Olympics. Unfortunately, he had an early exit in the first round itself, losing to an athlete of the ROT. Judo which is not at all famous in India now has a representation from India at the apex sports festival, and this is a moment of pride!
India’s first female Olympic Swimmer after 12 years! Just 18, this young lady has lived her dream and competed in the 200m freestyle event. Even though the South Asian Games 2016 gold medalist finished second from below the table, she hopes to qualify for the Tokyo 2020 and get a medal there using this experience.
Not exaggerating, this 22 year young lady has made the nation the most proud with whatever she has done till date. This not-so-famous gymnast has swung to stardom, even surpassing a lot of Olympic medalists with her performances and attitude to give her best. She was the first Indian to be honored with the “International Gymnast” tag by the global federation.
Dipa was in the limelight of the world at the Rio Olympics vaulting the “Produnova”, the toughest vault in the history of the sport for a world record third successful time and entering the finals of the Vault. Her performances en route Rio and in the qualification round have drawn a lot of national attention and is now a true inspiration to a lot of aspiring youngsters to take up Gymnastics which has not found a base in India yet. She has taken over the baton and has made it big enough and is destined to make it bigger with time and lets wish her all the luck for her finals on 14th August.
With all these players risking their careers, having chosen a sport which is not well welcomed in a country like India and still managing to give such really inspirational performances, it would surely motivate the next generations to pick sports of their choices devoid of any fear and this is why I call “INDIA IS DEVELOPING!”
All the best India for the rest of the Rio Olympics!