In­dia to boost prepa­ra­tions for Tokyo 2020

The Myanmar Times - - Sport -

NEW Delhi will form a task force to pre­pare for the next three Olympics af­ter In­dia’s dis­ap­point­ing medal tally at Rio, Prime Min­is­ter Naren­dra Modi an­nounced on Au­gust 26.

The spe­cial team of ex­perts will chalk out a broad strat­egy to en­sure ef­fec­tive par­tic­i­pa­tion of ath­letes in the 2020, 2024 and 2028 Games, while aim­ing to im­prove their sports fa­cil­i­ties and train­ing as well as their se­lec­tion process.

A string of below-par per­for­mances saw In­dia win just two medals at the re­cent Games, fewer than the six clinched dur­ing their best-ever per­for­mance in Lon­don four years ear­lier.

“The Prime Min­is­ter Shri Naren­dra Modi an­nounced at the meet­ing of the Coun­cil of Min­is­ter’s to­day that [a] Task Force will be set up to pre­pare a com­pre­hen­sive ac­tion plan for ... the next three Olympic games,” a gov­ern­ment state­ment re­leased late on Au­gust 26 said. The task force will be set up over the next few days, it added.

In­dia, a coun­try ob­sessed with cricket, has never fin­ished high on the medal ta­ble – win­ning just 28 from 24 Olympic ap­pear­ances.

Bad­minton cham­pion PV Sindhu clinched sil­ver at the Rio Games and wrestler Sak­shi Ma­lik won bronze, spark­ing an out­pour­ing of na­tional pride and cel­e­bra­tions in In­dia.

But it was far below the sports min­istry’s tar­get of 10 medals in Rio, where it had sent its largest-ever squad.

In­dian ath­letes of­ten com­plain of sub­stan­dard train­ing fa­cil­i­ties and a lack of gov­ern­ment in­vest­ment in sport in the coun­try of 1.25 bil­lion.

The gov­ern­ment said it had spent about 1.2 bil­lion ru­pees (US$18 mil­lion) pre­par­ing the ath­letes for Rio – a frac­tion of the amount forked out by China, Bri­tain and other coun­tries.

In­dia, a coun­try ob­sessed with cricket, has never fin­ished high on the medal ta­ble – win­ning just 28 from 24 Olympic ap­pear­ances.

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