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P.R.Sreejesh has yet again been appreciated for taking Indian Men's Hockey to "newer heights" by helping it secure the Olympic bronze medal in the Tokyo Games. Shamsheer Vayalil, Chairman and Managing Director of UAE-based, VPS Healthcare on Monday announced a cash reward of Rs 1 crore for Sreejesh
Sreejesh, who hails from Kochi, pulled off a stunning save in the last few seconds of the match resulting in the bronze medal after decades for India.
"Through his outstanding performance at the Olympics, Sreejesh has brought joy to Indians around the world. As a fellow Malayali, I take tremendous pride in his achievement. Thanks to his efforts, the interest in hockey has been renewed. His performance, along with that of the entire Indian hockey team, will serve as encouragement for hundreds of youths in the country," said Vayalil.
Sreejesh thanked Vayalil for his message and the gesture of appreciation.
"Dr. Shamsheer has congratulated the entire team for this great achievement and offered his support to us. The announcement of the reward caught me by surprise. A reward for winning a medal in the Olympics is delightful news and I feel very fortunate to be the recipient," said Sreejesh.
Sreejesh, who returns to India on Monday after the successful Tokyo campaign, will be presented with the cash prize at a special function in Kochi, later this month.(IANS/HP)
By Saish Bhise
Barely a decade ago, Russians were proud to host the world's most expensive Olympics, The Sochi Winter Olympics. Moreover, the Russians won the most medals than any other participating nation. All was glorious, until the unfolding of the alleged state-sponsored doping scandal.
The alleged scandal involved various high profile government officials from the Foreign Intelligence Services (FSB). The FSB is the principal security agency of Russia and is the successor of the dreaded KGB. Russia's fall from grace moment came when the World Anti Doping Agency (WADA) imposed a ban of four years, ensuing Russia won't be an official contender in the ongoing 2020 Tokyo Olympics and the upcoming 2022 Fifa World Cup. The ban was later shortened by two years in 2020. Russian athletes can still circumvent the ban and compete in the Games but under the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) title.
Sport is an important part of Russian society. The ambition to prove that Russian's can pull off a major sports event like the Olympics transformed the geographical landscape of Sochi city completely. Sochi, from being an idyllic resort city, located on the serene banks of the Sochi River, in southern Russia became the hotspot for tourists from all around the world. It was the host city for the 2017 Winter Olympics. The original budget for the Games was estimated up to US$12 billion, but various factors plausibly caused cost overruns. Which culminated in an actual expenditure of US$51 billion, surpassing the estimated $44 billion cost of the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing. Making, the Sochi Winter Olympics Games the most expensive Olympics in the world. Three years after the 2014 Games raised an outcry over the estimated $50 billion price tag, the story of the Kremlin's Olympic fiasco was overshadowed by Moscow's annexation of the Crimean Peninsula from Ukraine.
Why was Russia barred from the 2020 Tokyo Olympics?
The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) banned Russia after its investigators found that Russia had tampered with drug-testing data to cover up the state-sponsored doping programs that involved over 1,000 athletes. In accordance with the ban, Russia cannot be an official participant at the upcoming 2022 Fifa World Cup in Qatar or the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics.
How does the ROC function?
While the Russian athletes in Tokyo will still be permitted to wear the Russian colours of white, blue and red, under the rules of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), they are prohibited from displays of national representation.
The IOC rules state that,
- "All the public displays of the organization's participant name should use the acronym 'ROC,' and not the full name 'Russian Olympic Committee'".
- Instead of the usual Russian flag, the ROC will be represented by another flag. Currently, it is represented by a flag that features an Olympic flame in the Russian colours above the five Olympic rings.
- If any ROC athlete or a team wins a medal, Pyotr Tchaikovsky's "Piano Concerto No. 1" will be played instead of the protocolic way of playing the winning country's national anthem.
Meanwhile, in Russia, athletes were issued a cheat sheet from the Russian Olympic Committee, well in advance of the Tokyo Games. The purported cheat sheet outlines advice on how to deal with pesky reporters questioning the WADA doping ban, the annexation of Crimea, possible sexual harassment allegations and even 'Black Lives Matter' for instance. As of now, ROC stands fifth in the medals tally at The Tokyo Games. But, it is still expected to come in the top three contenders in the final medal tally.
By Himanshu Pal
Neeraj Chopra, VSM, has become the first ever Indian track and field athlete to win a GOLD medal at Olympics. Subedar Neeraj Chopra created history after he clinched the gold in javelin throw with an attempt of 87.58 metres.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated Neeraj Chopra, he wrote on Twitter, "History has been scripted at Tokyo! What Neeraj Chopra has achieved today will be remembered forever. The young Neeraj has done exceptionally well. He played with remarkable passion and showed unparalleled grit. Congratulations to him for winning the Gold."
History has been scripted at Tokyo! What @Neeraj_chopra1 has achieved today will be remembered forever. The young Neeraj has done exceptionally well. He played with remarkable passion and showed unparalleled grit. Congratulations to him for winning the Gold. #Tokyo2020 https://t.co/2NcGgJvfMS
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) August 7, 2021
Subedar Neeraj Chopra VSM, represented India in Athletics (Men's Javelin Throw), at the Tokyo Olympics. He has become the first track and field athlete to win a gold medal for the country. Soon after the news of his historic victory at Olympics, his native village in Panipat Haryana, erupted into celebrations. Also, Famous personalities across the country took to social media to hail the Star Olympian.
Haryana CM Manohar Lal Khattar congratulated Neeraj Chopra on his victory. He also announced a 6 crore reward money and 'A Grade' post in government service for Chopra.
Interestingly, India's two gold medal-winning Olympians have a Chandigarh connection -- Neeraj Chopra and shooter Abhinav Bindra.Shooter Abinav Bindra and Neeraj Chopra who won the gold in Beijing in 2008, grew up in the Chandigarh suburb Zirakpur and Chopra studied at the DAV College, Sector 10, Chandigarh.
Indian wrestler Ravi Kumar (57kg) and Deepak Punia (86kg) enjoyed fruitful outings at the Tokyo Olympic Games as they secured semifinal berths in their respective weight categories at the Makuhari Messe on Wednesday.
On the opening day of the wrestling competition, Ravi Kumar defeated Bulgaria's Georgi Vangelov 14-4 on technical superiority to reach the last-four in the men's 57kg category, while compatriot Deepak Punia overcame China's Zushen Lin 6-3 on points to advance to the semifinals.
Ravi Kumar will take on Nurislam Sanayev of Kazakhstan in the last-four, while Punia will be up against David Morris Taylor of the USA.
Earlier, Ravi Kumar had won his opening-round bout by technical superiority against Colombia's Oscar Tigreros to secure a quarterfinal spot. Competing in the Round-of-16 bout against the Colombian wrestler, the 23-year-old Ravi Kumar, who is making his Olympic debut, showed no nerves as he dominated the bout to win by technical superiority (13-2).
Ravi Kumar landed attack after attack and went 13-2 up, winning the bout by technical superiority with minutes to spare. In wrestling, building up a 10-point lead over the opponent results in a victory by technical superiority.
India's 86kg freestyle wrestler Deepak Punia showed no signs of the niggle that had forced him to pull out of the Poland Open Ranking Series in Warsaw in June, as he defeated Nigeria's Ekerekeme Agiomor on technical superiority to secure a quarterfinal berth.
He got his Olympic campaign to a fine start as he was in control from the start of the bout and hardly ever allowed his Nigerian opponent any room to maneuver his moves, finally winning with a 12-1 on technical superiority.
Punia, who had also suffered an elbow injury just before the Games, was slow at the start but came into his own as the bout progressed, inflicting takedowns at regular intervals to earn points.
The Indian wrestler eased into a 4-1 lead at the break and extended his lead comfortably in the second period.
Punia, the silver medallist from the 2019 world wrestling championships, then set up a clash with China's Lin Zushen in the quarterfinals and defeated him 6-3.