New Delhi: The year 2021 was good for India in terms of sports. Indian athletes performed well at the Tokyo Olympics. Javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra won the first medal in track and field in the 121-year Olympic history of India and that too a gold.
Apart from this, Indian teams made history in both men’s and women’s hockey. These achievements not only made the Indian fans happy, but also made them cry on many occasions.
When the Indian flag was raised and the national anthem was played on the podium after Neeraj Chopra won the gold, every Indian’s heart swelled with pride.
Let us take a look at several such emotional moments in Indian sports:
1. Team India destroyed Australia’s pride at GABA
The year started in a great way for the Indian fans. The Indian team was on a tour of Australia in January. On this tour, Team India lost the first Test badly. The story was written in golden letters by the Indian cricket team. India had beaten Australia in the Melbourne Test and tied the series at 1-1.
The team then had to play in Sydney. Team India was in danger of losing in Sydney. But then Cheteshwar Pujara stood as a wall in front of Australia and victory.
After this, Rishabh Pant’s aggressive batting and Hanuma Vihari-Ravichandran Ashwin’s determination kept Australia away from victory. Team India drew this match. The team then reached Gabba (Brisbane), where the Australian team had not lost for 36 years. The Indian team broke GABA’s arrogance and defeated Australia by 3 wickets and won the four-match Test series 2-1. After this, the Indian players kept waving the tricolor around the field. This moment was worth watching and the fans got emotional.
2. Mirabai Chanu had a great start at the Tokyo Olympics
The Indian team has not been able to do much since the last two Olympics. India had won a total of three medals in the 2012 Olympics and just two medals in 2016. This time too, the fans did not have any special expectations. The Olympics started and on the very first day, weightlifter Mirabai Chanu gave India a silver medal.
This banging start gave hope to the fans. Mirabai became the second Indian woman weightlifter to win an Olympic medal. Earlier in the year 2000, Karnam Malleshwari had given a bronze medal to India in the Sydney Olympics. By the time Mirabai won the silver, millions of Indian fans were filled with tears. These were tears of joy of victory.
3. Indian flag soared high in women’s hockey
Before reaching the Tokyo Olympics, Team India’s performance in women’s hockey was nothing special. When the team took the field in the Olympics, no one expected that the daughters of the country would make history. The Indian women’s team was placed in Pool-A along with the Netherlands, Germany, Britain, Ireland and South Africa. India were fourth in their group with two wins and three losses.
The Indian women’s team’s campaign at the Tokyo Olympics began with defeats in three consecutive matches against the Netherlands, Germany and defending champions Britain.
However, the team made a great comeback and defeated the ranked Ireland team 1-0. It then beat South Africa 4-3. The place of the Indian team in the quarter finals was decided after defeating Ireland 2-0 in the last match of Pool-A.
It then beat three-time Olympic champions Australia 1-0 in the quarterfinals. With this victory, the Indian women’s team managed to make it to the semi-finals of the Olympics for the first time. This victory changed India’s attitude towards hockey. Most of the players in the team were from poor families.
Performing at the Olympics was a big deal despite not having the resources to prepare. The victory of Team India filled the hearts of every fan with happiness. In the semi-finals, however, the team suffered a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Argentina. Even then, the team still had hopes of a bronze medal.
In the bronze medal match also, Team India suffered defeat at the hands of Great Britain. After missing the Olympic medal, the players of Team India started crying on the field. All the players including Savita Poonia, Vandana Kataria, Captain Rani Rampal and Neha Goyal became emotional.
All these players had performed wonderfully throughout the tournament. Despite playing so well in the important match, losing also broke the heart of the fans and there were tears in their eyes. You can guess about the dominance of the Indian women’s hockey team from the fact that the British players stood up and applauded in honor of the Indian players.
4. Indian men’s hockey team won Olympic medal after 41 years
The women missed out on winning one-sided medals, while the men’s hockey team made the year 2021 memorable by winning medals. The men’s hockey teams made history at the Tokyo Olympic Games with inspiring performances that will be remembered for ages.
The Indian men’s team ended a four-decade drought at the Olympics by winning a historic bronze medal. The Indian men’s team ended its 41-year long wait for an Olympic medal and relived some of the glory from past Olympics.
Remember India’s journey in the Olympics, it won its first match against New Zealand 3-2. However, in the second match after this, he suffered a humiliating 1-7 defeat at the hands of Australia. But then the Indian team made a strong comeback and then beat Spain 3-0, Argentina 3-1 and Japan 5-3. With this, the Indian team finished second in Group-A by winning four out of their five matches.
Led by Manpreet Singh, the team defeated Great Britain 3-1 in a one-sided match in the quarterfinals. With this victory, the Indian team managed to reach the semifinals of the Olympics after 49 years. The men’s hockey team lost 5-2 to Belgium in the semifinals. After this, in the match for the bronze medal, India made history by defeating Great Britain 5-4.
The team won a bronze medal, overcoming a 41-year drought. The last medal of the Indian hockey team in the Olympics was won in Moscow in 1980, when the team under the captaincy of Vasudevan Bhaskaran won gold. India has won the most medals in men’s hockey at the Olympics. The team won gold medals at the 1928, 1932, 1936, 1948, 1952, 1956, 1964 and 1980 Olympics. Also won silver in 1960 and bronze medals in 1968, 1972 and Tokyo Olympics. This amazing thing that happened in Indian hockey had made everyone emotional.
5. Neeraj Chopra won gold at Tokyo Olympics
Even in the year 2021, Corona maintained its fear among the people. Protests erupted several times before the successful hosting of the Tokyo Olympics. People did not want the Games to be held in Tokyo. Nevertheless, the International Olympic Federation successfully organized it at the risk of corona. India’s last event was on August 7, one day before the last day of the Olympics.
Javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra was in the field. Indian fans had high expectations from him and Neeraj did not disappoint anyone. He threw a javelin to 87.58 meters in the final and gave India a gold medal. With this victory, India wrote a new history in the world of sports. This was India’s first Olympic medal in track and field. At the same time, it was India’s first gold medal after the 2008 Beijing Olympics. In 2008 we won Gold (Abhinav Bindra) in shooting.
After the end of the Tokyo Olympics, World Athletics released a list of 10 great moments, in which they also included the moment when Neeraj Chopra won a gold medal in javelin. When Neeraj reached the podium and played the national anthem, the chests of all Indians became wide with pride. In the Olympics, the national anthem is played only for the first place athlete. Hearing this, Indian fans also became emotional.
6. PV Sindhu wins second Olympic medal
Apart from this, winning an Olympic medal for the second time in a row by PV Sindhu was also a big achievement. PV Sindhu had won silver at the 2016 Rio Olympics. This year she managed to win bronze.
Her victory had made the Indians emotional. There were many occasions this year when Indian players did the feat of winning and filled the hearts of the fans with joy.
Amid the grief and devastation of the coronavirus pandemic, the historic performances by Indian players gave relief to millions of Indian fans in difficult times.
first published:Dec. 31, 2021, 3:22 p.m.