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Tokyo 2020

Tokyo Olympics: India can still better the medal tally they achieved at the London Olympics

Neeraj Chopra and Bajrang Punia have high chances of winning medals in the final 3 days of the Tokyo Olympics

Neeraj Chopra
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Neeraj Chopra (Source: Getty Images)

By

C.C. Chengappa

Updated: 5 Aug 2021 1:32 PM GMT

The last time India had a large medal tally was at the London Olympics in 2012. A total of 6 medals were won out of which there were 2 silver and 4 bronze medals. Sports like shooting and wrestling dominated the medal winning contingent.There was immense hope that India would hit double digits for the first time at the Tokyo Olympics. While that might not be the case, India can still surpass its medal tally at London with 2 key contenders still left. Neeraj Chopra and Bajrang Punia can win two more medals and take India to 7 in total.

Neeraj Chopra

The 23 year old did exceedingly well in the qualification stages by topping the qualifiers. To add to it, two of his main contenders failed to qualify by throwing below the qualification mark and falling behind the pecking order. This makes only Johannes Vetter the main individual who can better Neeraj in the finals. The probability of Neeraj not winning a medal is relatively low given that all the other 12 competitors have never bettered his record or his consistent best throws. They do come close however to the 86m mark so Neeraj will have to be at his best and aim for the 90m mark to guarantee himself a silver at least.

Bajrang Punia

Bajrang Punia

Bajrang Punia has been the dominative self that he is over the past few years so it was expected that he had a good shot at a podium finish. But what really works in his favour is that he has been handed an easy draw and has avoided Takuto Otoguro, his arch nemesis who has also beaten him twice before. He will only face the Japanese strongman if Bajrang reaches the final. Before that he will have an easy first round match before facing Iran's Ghiasi Cheka. He will then take on Kazakhastan's Daulet Niyazbekov who will be his toughest competitor given that he is a 2019 World Championship silver medallist. He should make it to the semi-finals easily but beyond that it will be interesting to see how it all plays out.


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