Female athletes have done India proud with their performance at the Tokyo Olympics. With the overall contingent of 228 people, so far we have won 3 medals. One silver by Chani Saikhon Mirabai in Women’s 49 kg weightlifting and another bronze by PV Sindhu who also won her second Olympic medal. Besides that, Lovlina Boroghain has done us proud by winning the bronze medal in the welterweight semi-finals.
Who are the other female Olympians?
Apart from the medal winners, we had a talented pool of female athletes who took part in this Olympics. Bhavani Devi, who is the first fencer to represent India at the Olympics had a great start but lost to M.A Brunet from France. Not just Bhavani Devi, but Nethra Kumanan is also the first Indian Woman sailor to qualify for the Olympics. Aditi Ashok has come back from her sabbatical to play golf, and has qualified to represent India. She’s currently tied with the World Number 2 in her competition. The talented Maana Patel from Ahmedabad also qualified for the Olympics. She wants to soak in the experience and plans on getting a medal at the Asian Games and Commonwealth Games. She however failed to qualify for the 100m backstroke in the Olympics. 2012 bronze medal winner, MC Mary Kom lost her bout in the round of 16 and couldn’t qualify further.
There’s always a next time and there’s always more effort to put in.
What has been the history of Indian female athletes at the Olympics?
During the 2000 Summer Olympics, India fielded 19 female athletes, just under 30 per cent of the contingent. Since then, the number has only gone up till the 2012 London Olympics, before taking a huge leap at the Rio Olympics.
What is more interesting is that this year 56 women athletes have participated in the games. This is the highest number of female participants that India has ever sent to the Olympics.
We have won a total of 15 Olympic medals out of which 7 have been bagged by women.
Weightlifter Karnam Malleswari is the first Indian woman to win an individual Olympic medal at the Olympics in 2000. 12 years after Karnam’s medal we have Saina Nehwal who won a Bronze medal at the 2012 games in London. Apart from them, Mary Kom won another Bronze medal at the London Olympics. In the following Olympics, Sakshi Malik won us another bronze medal competing in the 58 kg wrestling category.
How are the 2020 Olympics looking for Indian female athletes so far?
This year, more Indian female athletes have had more success compared to their male counterparts. So far, Chani Saikhon Mirabai and PV Sindhu have clinched silver and bronze respectively. Today Lovlina Boroghain clinched a bronze medal in boxing. Apart from that, the women’s hockey team has made history by making it to the semi-finals for the first time with a 1-0 win over Australia. They however lost their semifinals to Argentina. Even in doing so, they have created history by making it to the semifinals for the first time.
Unfortunately, none of the men have won a medal in their respective competitions, so far. The Indian men’s hockey team crashed out yesterday after a tough loss to Belgium. World Number 1, Amith Panghal lost his bout in the round of 16. However, the nation has strong expectations from Wrestler Bajrang Punia and track and field athlete Neeraj Chopra who stood first in his qualifying.
Irrespective of the results, the nation is very proud of its daughters for putting in all the hard work and taking the spirit of sports to another level.