Since 1900, India has won only 28 medals in the 24 Olympic Games that it has participated in; of these, 9 were gold, 6 silver, and 11 were bronze. Unfortunately 2016 was no great a year, with just two medals at the Rio Games from the billion-population country. However, 2020 brings another ray of hope, here are the top athletes hoping to bring back a medal for the nation.
PV Sindhu (Badminton)
This name reads as no shocker as PV Sindhu become a nationwide sensation when she claimed silver at Rio, at the age of 21. She has worked hard to be among the top five ranked badminton players in the world. She has won two Super Series titles, including the BWF one, in December 2018. Sindhu is a contender for a medal at Tokyo with the nations eye for a gold on this one.
Indian Men’s Hockey Team
The National sport of India has a made a come back and what a way to do it than qualify for the quarter finals in the 2016 Rio Games (After a period of 36 years!) The team will be favourites for a place on the podium in the Tokyo Olympics.
Shiva Thapa (Boxing)
Indian athletes are a force to reckon with when it comes to boxing. Vijendra Singh and Mary Kom have proved us right and we can expect more glory in 2020. Shiva Thapa, who is the youngest Indian boxer to qualify for Olympics, is currently ranked number three in his weight category and is a top medal prospect for the nation.
Manu Bhaker (Shooting)
The youngest Indian to win a gold at the ISSF World Cup, Manu Bhaker is another name in this medal list. This young Indian shooter is a junior and senior champion in 10 meters Air Pistol. Her gold in the 2018 Commonwealth Games also earned her the new commonwealth record in her category. Said to be at her best form, Manu is certainly has the glimpses of the medal in her eye.
Saikhom Mirabai Chanu (Weightlifting)
Hailing from Manipur, Saikhom Mirabai Chanu is a weightlifter for the Indian contingent. She bagged the gold at the World Weightlifting Championships held in United States. At the 21st Commonwealth Games, she broke the Commonwealth record five times in a total of her six attempts. Chanu can be considered one of the only Indian weightlifter with a chance to bag gold at the 2020 Olympics in the 48kg category.
Vinesh Phogat (Wrestling)
The first Indian woman wrestler to win gold in the Asian Games, Vinesh Phogat was not so much known before 2018. She won gold at two major tournaments, the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games and the 2018 Asian Games and stands with pride to win her nation a medal at the Tokyo Games.
Hima Das (Track)
Nicknamed as the ‘Dhing Express’, Hima Das is the first Indian athlete to win a gold in a track event at the IAAF World U20 Championship and is also one of the medal favourite athletes in the 2020 Olympics. Hima has bagged three medals at the Asian Games and is all set to bring her nation a medal on the world stage.
Neeraj Chopra (Javelin Throw)
Neeraj Chopra is a 24 years old Indian track & field athlete who represents the country in the javelin throw. He bagged gold at the Commonwealth Games 2018 with a magnificent throw of 86.47 m. He also went to win gold at the Asian Games 2018 setting a new national record of 88.06 meters. Neeraj is a medal favourite for the Tokyo Olympics.