October 3, 2022

India’s journey on the Olympics started in Paris in 1900 when Norman Pritchard received the nation’s first-ever medal by claiming silver within the males’s 200m hurdles competitors.

India has since gone on to win 28 Olympic medals, together with 9 gold, seven silver and 12 bronze. However that determine pales compared to the medals received by the U.S. and Britain and is a shock for a nation so densely populated.

Nonetheless, India has loved large success in a number of sports activities that aren’t a part of the Olympics, together with cricket, kabaddi and snooker.

With the Tokyo Olympics quick approaching, we check out the sports activities that might have fetched India a medal if they’d been included within the Video games.


Kabaddi originated in India a number of centuries in the past and continues to be probably the most widespread sports activities within the nation.

It was launched within the Asian Video games for the primary time in 1990 and has been part of the quadrennial occasion ever since. India is essentially the most profitable group on the Asian Video games, profitable seven gold medals.

India has additionally claimed prime honors on the Kabaddi World Cup in every of the three editions since its inception in 2004.

Kabaddi was by no means launched into the Olympics, though it did characteristic as an indication sport on the 1936 Berlin Video games. If it was a part of the Tokyo Olympics, India would have undoubtedly been one of many favorites.


MS Dhoni and Yuvraj Singh in action during the 2011 ICC World Cup final
MS Dhoni and Yuvraj Singh in motion throughout the 2011 ICC World Cup closing

Cricket is by far the most well-liked sport in India, with gamers having fun with celeb standing within the nation. India has received two 50-over World Cups and a T20 World Cup, and is at present the top-ranked Take a look at group on the planet. Nonetheless, it has by no means had a shot at securing an Olympic medal.

Additionally Learn: Tokyo Olympics 2021: Full checklist of Indian athletes who’ve certified thus far

Cricket was included within the Video games in 1900, however Britain and France have been the one taking part nations. The game has by no means been part of the Olympics since.


Viswanathan Anand is a five-time world champion
Viswanathan Anand is a five-time world champion

Viswananthan Anand has been the poster boy of Indian chess for many years and his achievements are unmatched.

A five-time world champion, Anand is taken into account the best speedy chess participant of his era, having received the World Blitz Cup again in 2000. He grew to become India’s first grandmaster in 1988 and was additionally the primary recipient of the distinguished Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award in 1991-92.

Anand can also be one of many few gamers to have surpassed an ELO score of 2800, which he achieved manner again in 2006.

Nonetheless, with Chess not part of the Video games, an Olympic medal continues to be lacking from his trophy cupboard.

Cue Sports activities

Pankaj Advani in action during the 2006 Doha Asian Games
Pankaj Advani in motion throughout the 2006 Doha Asian Video games

India’s tryst with cue sports activities dates manner again to the nineteenth century, when billiards was a well-liked exercise amongst British Military officers stationed within the Asian nation. Snooker originated in India within the latter half of the nineteenth century.

As cue sports activities gained steam, world champions like Wilson Jones, Michael Ferreira, Geet Sethi and Pankaj Advani have been unearthed.

Advani, a 23-time world champion, is the one cueist to have received the Asian and World Championships in all codecs of Billiards and Snooker. He additionally claimed Asian Video games gold medals in 2006 and 2010.

If cue sports activities are ever launched into the Olympics earlier than Advani retires, he can certainly count on to bag a medal or two.


Saurav Ghosal (right) became the first Indian to win the British Junior Under-19 Squash title back in 2004.
Saurav Ghosal (proper) grew to become the primary Indian to win the British Junior Underneath-19 Squash title again in 2004.

Among the many sports activities on this checklist, Squash got here the closest to being accepted into the Olympics. It narrowly missed out on a spot on the 2012 and 2016 Video games, shedding out to Golf and Rugby respectively, whereas additionally being omitted of the 2021 Tokyo Olympics.

Gamers like Saurav Ghosal, Joshna Chinappa and Deepika Pallikal have made nice strides for India on the worldwide circuit.

Ghosal was the primary Indian to win the British Junior Underneath-19 Squash title, again in 2004. He additionally boasts a number of Asian Video games medals, together with a gold within the group occasion on the 2014 version in Incheon, whereas the pair of Chinappa and Pallikal claimed gold on the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Video games.

With the rise of Indian squash, there is no such thing as a doubt that the nation would have been medal prospects if the game was a part of the Tokyo Olympics.

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