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Tokyo 2020 Paralympics

Indian para archers geared up for maiden Paralympics in Tokyo

A five-member Para Archery contingent looks set for their best possible show at their debut Paralympics

Indian para-archers
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Indian para-archers (Source: SAI)

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PTI

Updated: 22 Sep 2021 8:38 PM GMT

A five-member Para Archery contingent looks set for their best possible show at their debut Paralympics. The Indian crop is relatively young and born in the 90s, with Rakesh Kumar being the only slightly elder one having born in 1985. The likes of Harvinder Singh, Jyoti Balyan, Shyam Sundar and Vivek Chikara are brimming with passion ahead of the Tokyo Paralympics.

While Harvinder and Vivek will participate in the Men's Recurve events, Jyoti, Rakesh and Shyam Sundar will be in action in their respective Compound events. The Compound archers will also participate in the Mixed Team event. They all are a part of the Target Olympic Podium Scheme (TOPS).

The key Government of India interventions for these archers include financial assistance towards procuring equipments, foreign exposures and international competitions as well as participation in National Coaching Camps along with Sports Science Support.

Shyam Sundar, the youngest of the lot at 24, has been training at the SAI centre in Sonepat under coach Anil Joshi. The Rajasthan-based Compound Para Archer enters the Tokyo Paralympics at the back of 2 Silver medals in Individual and Mixed Team events at the World Ranking Tournament, FAZZA Cup, Dubai 2021. Shyam Sundar has become the first para archer from Rajasthan to qualify for the Paralympic Games. One of his limbs is paralysed because of which he uses his teeth to pull the bow string.

Uttar Pradesh-based Jyoti Balyan, 27, also like Shyam Sundar, bagged 2 Silver medals in Dubai earlier this year. She comes from a humble background. Her late father was a farmer and mother is a homemaker. She was given a wrong injection in her leg at a very young age that resulted in her suffering from life-long polio. Jyoti and Rakesh Kumar both train under Kuldeep Kumar at the Shri Vaishno Devi Sports Complex in Katra, Jammu. Rakesh, hailing from Jammu and Kashmir, won a gold medal in Dubai earlier this year in the individual event. He met with an accident in 2010 and both his legs got paralysed. Since then, he has been on a wheelchair.

Haryana- based Recurve archer Harvinder Singh is a gold medallist in the Men's Individual Recurve Open at the Asian Para Games 2018. At the age of one and a half, he fell ill due to dengue fever after which he was administered with an injection that had an adverse effect and Singh's legs stopped functioning properly. However, Harvinder took interest in archery in 2012 while watching archery matches in London Olympics on TV and joined the archery range the very next day.

Vivek Chikara, meanwhile, an individual gold medallist at the Para Asian Championship, Thailand 2019, has done MBA in retail management in the year 2015 and has also worked as an Executive in Mahindra & Mahindra. In 2017 he met with a truck accident following which he lost his left leg below the knee.

Indian archery schedule Tokyo Paralympics

August 27 โ€“ Ranking Rounds

Women's Individual Compound Open - Jyoti Balyan

Men's Individual Recurve Open - Harvinder Singh

Men's Individual Compound Open - Rakesh Kumar

Men's Individual Compound Open - Shyam Sundar

Men's Individual Recurve Open - Vivek Chikara

August 28

Men's Individual Compound Open (1/24 Elimination, 1/16 Elimination) - Rakesh Kumar

Men's Individual Compound Open (1/24 Elimination, 1/16 Elimination) โ€“ Shyam Sundar

August 29

Women's Individual Compound Open (1/16 Elimination) - Jyoti Balyan

Mixed Team Compound Open - 1/8 Elimination, Quarter Final, Semi Final, Bronze Medal Match, Gold Medal Match

August 30

Women's Individual Compound Open (1/8 Elimination, Quarter Final, Semi Final, Bronze Medal Match, Gold Medal Match) - Jyoti Balyan

August 31

Men's Individual Compound Open (1/8 Elimination, Quarter Final, Semi Final, Bronze Medal match, Gold Medal match) - Shyam Sundar

Men's Individual Compound Open (1/8 Elimination, Quarter Final, Semi Final, Bronze Medal match, Gold Medal match) โ€“ Rakesh Kumar

September 3

Men's Individual Recurve Open (1/16 Elimination, 1/8 Elimination, Quarter Final, Semi Final, Bronze Medal match, Gold Medal match) - Harvinder Singh

Men's Individual Recurve Open (1/16 Elimination, 1/8 Elimination, Quarter Final, Semi Final, Bronze Medal match, Gold Medal match) โ€“ Vivek Chikara

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