India’s Olympic Dreams Quashed

Indian sports received a huge setback and a major embarrassment when the International Olympic Association decided to suspend the Indian Olympic Association due to Government interference. This decision was on the cards after IOA decided to go ahead with the elections under the government`s Sports Code, defying the IOC`s order to hold the polls under the Olympic Charter. The suspension means that the IOA will not receive IOC funding and its officials will be banned from attending Olympic meetings and events. India`s athletes will also be barred from competing in Olympic events under their national flag, but they can participate under the IOC banner. Sports Minister Jitendra Singh said that The Indian Olympic Association is to blame for the current crisis as the ministry had told the IOA many times to amend its constitution and be compliant with the international rules.

LOWS Despite the fact that India put up a much improved performance in the London Olympics there were also a few major disappointments.
The biggest disappointment came in hockey, a sport that has brought glories to the country in the quadrennial extravaganza like no other event. Led by Bharat Chettri and under the guidance of coach Michael Nobbs, India succumbed to one defeat after another, losing all of their matches at the Olympics. They finished 12th – last among the participating teams, which also happened to be their worst ever performance at the event.

On the hallowed turf of Lord’s, Indian archers were expected to script history. The presence of world No. 1 archer Deepika Kumari among the contingent was reason enough to harbour hopes of a rich medal haul. Despite the hype, in stark contrast, both the men and women’s team disappointed us. The story was repeated in the individual events too as they returned empty handed with the biggest casualty being 18-year-old Deepika. She was stunned by Amy Oliver 2-6 in the opening round. She was the last of the six archers to bow out, and with her ended India’s unsuccessful campaign in archery.

To say a medal was expected from Abhinav Bindra would be an understatement. In fact, he was the favourite to don the yellow metal again in the 10m Air Rifle event after his historic gold medal in Beijing. As luck would have it, Bindra failed to even qualify for the finals. His score of 594 out of 600 wasn’t enough to merit him a final SAINA NEHWAL Ace shuttler Saina Nehwal added another feather to her cap by winning a bronze medal in the women’s singles category to create history. Nehwal didn’t face any stiff competition on her way to the semi-final. It was there where she met the No. 1 seed Yihan Wang of China. She lost the match 13-21, 13-21. However, she still had a chance to fight for the bronze with Xin Wang of China. Luck was on her side as her opponent withdrew from the contest owing to a knee injury. Saina was trailing by a game and 0-1 in the contest but the injury meant that she would bring home the first medal for India in Olympic badminton.

Women boxing made its debut in the 2012 London Olympics and Indian hopes were resting on MC Mary Kom to bring home a medal. The 23-year-old was a favourite to win gold on the back of her five world championship titles. The Manipuri began her quest in style defeating Karolina Michalczuk of Poland 14-19 and then outclassed Maroua Rahali of Tunisia 15-6 to seal a medal. She made it to the semifinal where she lost to the eventual gold medallist Nicola Adams. However, her semi-final appearance meant that she had already clinched a historic bronze medal. SUSHIL KUMAR AND YOGESHWAR DUTT Within 45 minutes, Yogeshwar Dutt fought three bouts that won him a bronze medal in the Men`s wrestling 60kg freestyle category. The 30-year-old wrestler from Haryana was making his third Olympic appearance and had lost his second round bout to Besik Kudukhov of Russia. He then defeated Franklin, Masoud and Jong Myong Ri to clinch the bronze. On the final day of the Games, Sushil Kumar created history by becoming the first ever Indian to win two individual Olympic medals. He had won a bronze medal in the 2008 Beijing Games and he bettered it by clinching a silver after losing the final to Tatsuhiro Yonemitsu of Japan. berth and he finished a dismal 16th out of the 47 competitors in the qualifying round.

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The Indian boxing team failed to win any medal save for Mary Kom who secured a historic bronze in the women’s category. Several decisions were marred by controversy with the highlight being Vikas Krishan’s bout. Krishan had won his match against Errol Spence of USA; the referee later overturned the decision to announce the latter as the winner. The poster boy of Indian boxing, Vijender Kumar’s run came to an end in the quarterfinal as he too returned home without a medal.

The Indian Olympic contingent returned home with its best ever performance at the quadrennial event with six medals. GAGAN NARANG Gagan Narang opened the medal account for India with a bronze medal in the 10m air rifle event on the second day. The ace marksman was one of the contenders for the medal and he did not disappoint his fans. He shot 103.1 in the final to take his tally to 701.1 ahead of Chinese rival Wang Tao finishing third.

Army man Vijay Kumar made his country proud after clinching a silver medal in the 25m Rapid Fire Pistol event at the London Olympics. The unknown shooter from Himachal Pradesh shot 32/40 finishing ahead of Chinese rival Feng Ding while Leuris Pupo from Cuba took the gold with 34/40. His was the second medal for India at the event.

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