After a rather underwhelming outing in Rio Olympics with just two medals in the campaign and no gold, the Indian athletes will be upbeat to overturn their fate and pose for a strong podium finish.
India is yet to win a single gold medal in the Olympics since Abhinav Bindra's heroics in Beijing but that can change in Tokyo. Let us have a look at the top 5 players who can win gold for India:
Saurabh Chaudhary (Shooting)
The current World No. 2 from Uttar Pradesh, India will arguably be India's best bet for a gold medal finish at the podium. Saurabh Chaudhary stunned the world by winning the gold in World Cup events in Delhi and Munich way back in 2019 in the 10m Air Pistol Men's events.
Chaudhary had a silver medal finish in New Delhi, 2021 and is in fine form. He is also the only Indian to clinch gold in events like the World Championship, World Cup, Youth Olympics and Asian Games.
Mirabai Chanu (Weightlifting)
The Manipur-based 48-kg category weightlifter is on an upward curve in her career since her silver medal finish at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. She has also won the Commonwealth gold in 2018.
Chanu will arrive in Tokyo after setting the world record in the women's 49kg clean and jerk with a massive 119 kg lift at the Asian Weightlifting Championship in Tashkent a few weeks ago. Chanu will look to overturn her poor show in Rio and hope to build on her excellent form in the last few years.
Bajrang Punia (Wrestling)
The three-time World Championships medallist will have his task cut out for him in Tokyo as he trains vigorously in Russia. Punia is fresh with competitive wrestling under his belt with a gold in the Matteo Pellicone Ranking Series in Italy back in March.
The Arjuna Awardee is ranked no.1 in the World in the 65kg category with 14 points and will look to bank on it and make good use of his maiden Olympic finals.
Amit Panghal (Boxing)
Serving as a JCO in the Indian Army, Panghal will look to make his barracks proud by making all the right noises in the Olympics.
Panghal recently finished second in the 52kg Asian Boxing Championship in Dubai and has been in a good form of results. He has earlier won silver in the World Championships and will lead the Indian Boxing contingent.
Deepika Kumari (Archery)
The former World no.1 archer will aim to get back to the pinnacle of the rankings with a podium finish in the Olympics after a gold medal win in the Archery World Cup in Guatemala earlier this year.
Kumari had a period of inconsistency after her 2018 World Cup Gold but her performance in Guatemala speaks volumes of her capability which will be crucial to India's medal-winning chances in Archery.