August 15, 2023, marks a huge day for India as the country celebrates its 77th Independence Day. We have seen enormous growth in sports with our great athletes and national teams proudly representing the country at the world’s major sporting events.
Since its independence, India has evolved as a sporting superpower, carving a niche for itself with great exploits. There have been numerous magnificent moments in Indian sports history that are worth remembering and will be remembered for a long time.
In the last seven decades, India has had many highs and lows. From World Cup victories to Olympic gold medals, Indians have been honoured all around the world, yet there have been instances when they have come up short on the losing side.
Let’s take a look at the top 5 sporting achievements by India after August 15, 1947.
1) First Olympic medal, London Olympics 1948
A big achievement for Indian sports happened in 1948, just one year after Independence when the men’s hockey team won gold in London. It was a huge step forward for the nation, which was still healing from the wounds of partition in 1947, towards becoming a powerful country in the sphere of sports.
2) Abhinav Bindra Shoots Gold in Beijing Olympics
One of India’s most priceless Olympic moments occurred in 2008, when Abhinav Bindra earned a historic gold medal in the men’s 10m air rifle. The Indian shooter finished with a near-perfect 10.8, guaranteeing India’s first individual Olympic gold medal.
3) Indian cricket team winning the 1983, 2007 and 2011 World Cups
Many consider the 1983 Cricket World Cup in England to be India’s finest triumph. No one expected India to win the coveted title, and the Men in Blue were not even considered a contender for the knockouts. In the final, Kapil Dev and his devils defied all expectations, defeating the unbeatable West Indies squad led by Clive Llyod. This triumph marked the beginning of a new era in Indian sports, forever altering the landscape. Cricket became a household favourite, and this was the beginning of the emergence of our modern cricketing superstars. MS Dhoni led India to the inaugural T20 World Cup in 2007, followed by the 50-over World Cup in 2011.
4) Neeraj Chopra’s historic gold medal in Javelin Throw, Tokyo Olympics 2020
With his gold medal in the men’s javelin throw at Tokyo 2020, Neeraj Chopra became India’s second individual Olympic winner after Abhinav Bindra. It was India’s first Olympic medal in track and field.
5) Multiple medals in Tokyo Olympics 2020
Mirabai Chanu won the silver medal in the women’s 49kg category at Tokyo Olympics 2020.
PV Sindhu became the first Indian woman and only the second Indian athlete (after Sushil Kumar) to win two individual Olympic medals. PV Sindhu won the bronze medal in the women’s singles by defeating China’s He Bing Jiao 21-13, 21-15. Ravi Kumar Dahiya secured a silver medal in men’s 57kg freestyle wrestling when he defeated Kazakhstan’s Nurislam Sanayev in the semi-finals.
The Indian men’s hockey team earned an Olympic medal for the first time in 41 years, after winning gold in the 1980 Moscow Olympics. India came from behind to defeat Germany 5-4 and win the bronze medal.
(with inputs from ANI)