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Top 10 Medal contenders for India at Tokyo Olympics 2020

The countdown to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics has begun. Here we look at the top 10 medal contenders for India in Tokyo Olympics 2020. India is sending a large delegation to the Tokyo Olympics, with 126 participants.

Last updated: 17.07.2021
Top 10 Medal contenders for India at Tokyo Olympics 2020

The countdown to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics has begun. Due to the threat posed by COVID-19, the Tokyo Olympics will be held without spectators. All of the essential measures have been put in place in preparation for the Games to begin on July 23. India will send a large delegation to the Tokyo Olympics, with 126 participants. Alternate players will be participating in team sports as part of the contingent. With billions of Indians rooting for their athletes to win gold at the Games, India will put its faith in a few athletes. PV Sindhu (Silver in badminton) and Sakshi Malik (Bronze in Wrestling) were the only medalists at the 2016 Rio Olympics, a drop from the country's record haul in London.

Many previous Indian Olympians have stated that the next Tokyo Olympics could be the most important event in India's history. It's easy to understand why. While the majority of the prominent stars have already secured their spots in their respective sports, the country will also be represented in lesser-known sports like fencing and equestrian. This raises the chances of a successful Olympic campaign. Here are the ten competitors we believe are India's best medal prospects.

10. Mary Kom - 51kg Boxing

MC Mary Kom, a 2012 Olympic bronze winner, will compete for gold in Tokyo, which will likely be her final appearance at the Games. At India's opening ceremony, the six-time world champion will be one of the flag carriers. In 2021, the senior fighter made a strong showing at the Asian Boxing Championships, winning silver. Mary Kom, one of India's most seasoned campaigners, will be looking to improve on her bronze medal from the 2012 Olympics. She is the first female Indian boxer to have won an Olympic medal, and this year she will be seeking her second.

9. Indian Men’s Hockey Team

In the last several years, the Indian men's hockey team has experienced a comeback. After a poor eighth-place finish in Rio, the men haven't competed in any big tournaments since. However, under new coach Graham Reid, the team has shown promise in recent years, defeating teams like Australia, Belgium, the Netherlands, Argentina, and Germany. As a result, the Men in Blue will be upbeat as they prepare to begin their journey to the Tokyo Olympics in late July.

8. Saurabh Chaudhary - Shooting

He won ten World Cup medals, including eight gold, as a 19-year-old, set world records in both junior and senior 10m air pistol categories, and was ranked No. 1 in the world (currently No.2). He is 12 years younger than Abhishek Verma, his countryman and World No. 1. Despite his youth, this obviously demonstrates his improvement. Chaudhary will now be aiming to win the most valuable reward of them all.

7. Mirabai Chanu - Weightlifting

Mirabai Chanu's big break came when she won a silver medal at the 2014 Commonwealth Games. Mirabai Chanu went above and beyond by winning gold at the Commonwealth Games the following year and the World Championships the year before. Chanu's outstanding performance continued in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, where he took bronze in the Asian Weightlifting Championships. Chanu will be out to prove a point after a dismal performance in the Rio Olympics, where she failed to lift any of the weights in clean and jerk.

6. Vinesh Phogat - Wrestling

Vinesh, the first Indian female wrestler to win gold at both the CWG and the Asian Games, will compete in the 53kg category as the world No. 1 and top seed, having won gold in all of the events she competed in 2021. When Vinesh Phogat competes in the women's freestyle 53kg category at the Olympic Games, the entire nation will be watching with bated breath.

5. Neeraj Chopra - Javelin Throw

He is the country's hottest medal prospect right now. In Tokyo, Neeraj Chopra will be one of two Indian javelin throwers competing. Chopra rose to prominence after winning gold medals at both the Asian and Commonwealth Games in 2018. He qualified for Tokyo in January of last year, and his current best throw is 88.07 metres. Chopra might place on the podium at the Games if he can improve on it somewhat.

4. Amit Panghal - Boxing

After narrowly missing out on the gold medal at the Asian Championships in May, Amit Panghal will be aiming for vengeance when he steps into the Olympic ring in Tokyo. His greatest achievement was a silver medal at the World Championships, which was a first for Indian boxing. The Indian boxer gets another chance to improve on his shortcomings after losing in the world championship finals. Amit Panghal in Tokyo may find it to be a blessing in disguise.

3. PV Sindhu - Badminton

PV Sindhu, a silver medalist at the 2016 Rio Olympics, is the only Indian shuttler playing in the women's singles event this year. PV Sindhu had lost out on gold the previous year after losing in the final to Carolina Marin of Spain, but she will be hoping to improve her medal count this year. The reigning world champion advanced to the All England semi-finals earlier this year but is yet to win a title on the tour since winning the global crown in 2019. Carolina Marin will not be competing for this time, which may serve as a catalyst for her to perform even better in order to win the gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics.

2. Bajrang Punia - Wrestling

In the forthcoming Tokyo Olympics, the 27-year-old will be one of India's best medal hopes. Punia will compete in his first Olympic Games in Tokyo in the men's freestyle 65kg division. Bajrang, dubbed the 'Tank,' has medals from every championship he has competed in, beginning with the 2013 World Wrestling Championships, where he initially rose to prominence with a bronze. In recent years, he has been one of the top wrestlers in the country, and he will enter the Olympics as the second seed, with strong aspirations of a podium finish.

1. Deepika Kumari - Archery

Deepika Kumari came back to form this year, reclaiming her No. 1 world ranking earlier this month in the Archery World Cup, where she won many gold medals. She equalled the women's recurve world record in 2016 and has continued to amaze since then. At the Archery World Cup in Guatemala City in April, the current World No. 1 made history by being the first Indian woman to win three individual women's recurve gold medals. Kumari had a poor 16th-place finish at Rio 2016. Deepika Kumari, who has a lot of experience, will be desperate to prove her detractors wrong and is a strong candidate for both the solo and mixed team events.

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