‘Fingers, toes everything crossed that this will be India’s best Olympics performance, but there should be a nuanced approach to expectations’ | Tokyo Olympics News
MUMBAI: A nuanced approach dictates that expectations must be judged against reality when it comes to what can potentially be achieved in the Olympic Games. Especially when a group of Indian athletes, in all sports, have more than a billion hopes in them.
Three of India’s Most Famous Athletes of All Time: Aparna Popat, Ashwini Nachappa and Anju Bobby George, feel that there could be a mismatch between what is reality and what we begin to expect. All three were recently invited to the TOI Sportscast podcast.
“The reason the expectations come up is because every day, you know, you open the newspaper and say, the Indian athletes are doing very well, like you are watching an athlete win a tournament here, or you know, a medal there. And we celebrate it in isolation. But we are not really mapping it in terms of what it means for an Olympic standard. Or we’re not mapping it to find out what, you know, what the field was like, in that particular event or in that particular tournament. So, a gold, where, you know, the first, let’s say, eight are not participating, and you get a gold, it does not mean that it is a gold in the Olympics, because you are not comparing it to the Olympic standard. So I think somewhere to check expectations, it’s important that we even consider these considerations, ”Popat told the Times of India podcast Sportscast.
“I support that,” Ashwini adds. “I think the narrative is very important. How we inform the public is very important, who informs is very important. It needs to be established, you know, otherwise you’re going to create this kind of situation where everyone thinks the Olympics is, you know, you can get 10, 12, 15 medals. It does not run down the street. It takes a lot of effort. The journey of each one (athlete) is enormous. Each one is different. Ashwini Nachappa said on TOI Sportscast.
“The Olympics Actually, it’s a different setting. And the competition is very high and all the best athletes come for that competition. In athletics, I got a world championship medal (bronze in Paris 2003). In athletics, there is no difference between the world championships and the Olympics, when it comes to competition. But when I went to the Olympics, it was completely different. Because everyone (the athletes) is preparing for it, the whole world is preparing for it. And the competition, the tension, the expectations will be very high. So we have to deal with that and we have to be consistent and do our best. But it depends on that day (competition day at the Games). It could be anything. ” Anju Bobby George said on TOI Sportscast.
However, Arjuna’s three winners believe that the Indian contingent in Tokyo has the potential to improve their performance at the London 2012 Olympics and possibly surpass the 6-medal mark, which is still India’s best catch in a edition of the Games.
“The fingers and toes are knotted and crossed,” they say.
This latest episode of TOI Sportscast is available on all leading podcast platforms like Spotify, Amazon music, Google podcasts, Gaana, Saavn and also on the timesofindia.com podcast page.