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General News Rio Olympics 2016 - News & Updates
#1
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Record hundred Indian athletes already make cut for Rio Olympics

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New Delhi: India is all set to send it's biggest ever delegation for the forthcoming Olympics in Rio. In last two days, five Indian athletes have qualified for the biggest sporting extravaganza, which helped India to touch the hundred-figure mark for the first time.

Thus far, India has qualified for 13 sports disciplines at Rio, with swimming and golf still to be accounted for.

On Saturday, if Dutee Chand and Muhammad Anas booked a quota place for the quadrennial event, then on Sunday, Ankit Singh, Srabani Nanda and Mohammad Anas too sealed their places.

Interestingly, Anas, who qualified for his first Olympics became the 100th Indian to do so for Rio.

And more Indian athletes are likely to add to the list before the end of the Olympic qualification period.

In London Olympics in 2012, India sent its previous highest delegation, which had 83 athletes. 

Certainly, the qualification of 16-member women’s field hockey team has helped India swell the number of participants this time around. But the number of individual qualifiers too has seen an increase since 2012.

Icing on the cake is that Indian athletes have raised the bar. If at London, 14 Indians had met the qualifying standards in 11 events, then this time 23 have made the the cut in 16 events. 

Rio Games are scheduled to start from August 5. 

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#2
Rio Olympics: Unpaid police display 'welcome to hell' banner, claim nobody will be safe at Games

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New Delhi: In a shocking development, around 300 officers from Rio de Janeiro on Monday took to the streets to protest against the government.

With little over a month to go for the 2016 Olympics, the state's police and firefighters are yet to be paid in full.

Not just that, they also complained about lack of basic facilities at work due to insufficient water, ink and toilet paper.

A group of protestors displayed a 'welcome to hell' banner at the local airport. Whoever comes to Rio will not be safe, it read.

At the moment it appears as though Rio Games is almost like an accident waiting to happen.

Last week, the city's accredited anti-doping laboratory had been stopped from conducting tests.

The suspension came an embarrassment to Brazil and Rio so close to the Summer Games, which open August 5 after months of political turmoil and financial crisis for federal, state and city authorities.

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#3
Complete list of athletes representing India at 2016 Rio Olympics

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New Delhi: With little over a month to go for the Rio Olympics, Indian athletes are leaving no stone unturned to accumulate a record medals tally.

In 2012, the Indian contingent showed huge improvement in their performance at the coveted event.

Hence, fans are expecting yet another record-breaking display from all the Rio-bound athletes.

Here is the full list of athletes who will be representing India at the Olympics:

Archery

Atanu Das, Deepika Kumari, Laxmirani Majhi, Bombayla Devi

Athletics

Men - Inderjeet Singh (Shot Put), Vikas Gowda (Discus Throw), Gurmeet Singh, Baljinder Singh and Irfan Kolothum Thodi (Men's 20 km walk), Sandeep Kumar, Manish Singh Rawat  (Men's 50 km walk), Nitender Singh Rawat, Thonakal Gopi and Kheta Ram (Marathon), Muhammad Anas (Men’s 400m race) and Ankit Sharma (Long Jump)

Women - Seema Antil (Discus Throw), Manpreet Kaur (Shot put), Lalita Babar (3000m steeplechase), Tintu Luka (Women’s 800m event), Kavita Raut (Women’s marathon), Sudha Singh, OP Jaisha (Marathon), Khushbir Kaur (20km walk), Sapna Punia  (20km walk), Dutee Chand (Women’s 100m race), Srabani Nanda (Women’s 200m event).

Badminton

Saina Nehwal, PV Sindhu, Kidambi Srikanth, Manu Attri-Sumeet Reddy, Jwala Gutta, Ashwini Ponnappa

Boxing

Shiva Thapa (56 kgs Bantamweight category), Manoj Kumar (64 kgs) and Vikas Krishan (75kgs) 

Hockey

Sardar Singh and Ritu Rani will lead the Indian men and women respectively.

Gymanstics

Dipa Karmakar 

Judo

Avatar Singh

Rowing

Dattu Bhokanal 

Shooting

Jitu Rai (50 m Air Pistol), Ganag Narang (10 m Air rifle), Abhinav Bindra (10 m Air rifle), Gurpreet Singh (26 m Rapid fire pistol), Prakash Nanjappa (50 m pistol), Chain Singh (50 m Rifle Positions), Mairaj Ahmed Khan (Shotgun), Manvanjit Singh Sandhu and Kynan Chenai (Trap Shooting), Heena Sandhu (10 m Air Pistol), Ayonika Paul, Apurvi Chandela (10 m Air Rifle)

Table Tennis

Mouma Das, Manika Batra, Soumyajit Ghosh, Achanta Sharath Kamal

Tennis

Leander Paes, Rohan Bopanna, Sania Mirza, Prarthana Thombare

Weightlifting

Sivalingam Sathish Kumar (Men’s 77kg category), Saikhom Mirabai Chanu (Women’s 48kg category)

Wrestling

Narsingh Yadav (74 kg weight category), Yogeshwar Dutt (65 kg Free style category), Hardeep Singh (96 kg Greco-Roman category), Sandeep Tomar (57 kg category), Ravinder Khatri (85 kg category), Babita Kumari (53 kg category), Vinesh Phogat (48 kg category), Sakshi malik (58 kg category)

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#4
Official theme song 'Soul and Heart' video released. Watch now!

[Image: 505981_olympic_theme_song.jpg]

New Delhi: The official theme song "Alma e Coração" (Soul and Heart) music video is out and is performed by samba star Thiaquinho, also featuring rapper Projota was released by Som Livre.

The engaging video begins with drumbeats set over stunning vistas of Rio, then dissolving into the training regimes of aspiring athletes whose enthusiasm is contagious.


Though one needs to follow the subtitles to understand the lyrics, the spirit of the video makes it hard not to look forward for the mega-event.

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#5
Record 170 commentators join NBC Olympics’ coverage from Brazil 

MUMBAI: Bob Costas leads a record 170 NBC Olympics commentators as NBCUniversal presents coverage of the Games of the XXXI Olympiad from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil across NBC, NBCSN, Bravo, CNBC, Golf Channel, MSNBC, USA Network, Telemundo, NBC Universo, the NBC Sports app, and NBCOlympics.com in the US. 

The Opening Ceremony of the 2016 Rio Olympics is one month from today on NBC. ‘Today’ co-anchor Matt Lauer, Today’ special correspondent Meredith Vieira and ’Today’ co-host of the fourth hour Hoda Kotb will host the Opening Ceremony. 

More than 40 members of the team will be making their NBC Olympics debuts, led by Golf Channel’s David Feherty. 

NBC Sports Group presents expanded coverage of the Rio Games, including golf, returning to the Olympics for the first time since 1904. The overall talent lineup features the return of many of the network’s signature Olympic hosts, play-by-play commentators and analysts with Olympic experience. 

The roster includes Olympians who have won a combined total of 59 Olympic medals (25 gold, 21 silver, and 13 bronze). Team NBC would have finished fifth in the London medal count ahead of Germany and behind Team USA, China, Russia and Great Britain. 

Bob Costas, a 27-time Emmy Award winner, serves as NBC’s primetime host; Al Michaels will serve as a host during NBC’s daytime coverage on weekdays and weekends. Dan Patrick and Rebecca Lowe will work across both NBC and NBCSN. Liam McHugh and Carolyn Manno will handle NBCSN hosting duties. Ryan Seacrest will serve as host for NBC’s late night coverage.

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#6
Rio Olympics: SHOCKING! Women's hockey team captain Ritu Rani dropped from squad

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New Delhi: Indian women's hockey team captain Ritu Rani has been been dropped from the Rio Olympics-bound side owing to lack of performance and attitude problems.

The final squad of 16 is to be picked in three days' time but a senior member of the team management confirmed that Ritu has left the ongoing national camp in Bangalore.

"It's correct Ritu is not in the Olympic team. Her exclusion is solely on two counts - her (poor) performance and second is her attitude," he said.

"It has been explained to her time and again that she needs to lift her performance but she couldn't do so. The camp is still going on in Bangalore. It will disperse today and tomorrow we are reaching Delhi. Ritu left the camp day before yesterday."

Under Ritu's leadership the Indian women's team qualified for the Olympics for the first time in 36 years since 1980.

The 24-year-old has been at the forefront of Indian women's hockey for more than a decade and has been the key to the midfield.

Despite repeated attempts, Ritu could not be reached for her comments.

In her absence, the leadership role could fall on another senior player Rani Rampal.

However, Hockey India President Narender Batra tried to downplay the issue while calling it "immature" behaviour on part of the player.

"It's really immature on part of Ritu because the team is not yet announced. It will be officially announced only on July 12 when I will publicly open the sealed envelope," Batra said.

"Yes, the team management has given me their recommendations about captain and vice captains of both the teams and it will be finalised on July 11 during the HI executive board meeting."

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#7
SHOCKER: Krishna Poonia fails to qualify for 2016 Rio Olympics

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New Delhi: Ace Indian discus thrower Krishna Poonia has failed to qualify for the Rio Olympics as she could not touch the qualifying standard in the competitions she took part in the United States.

34-year-old Poonia, the lone Indian woman track and field athlete to have won an individual gold in the Commonwealth Games, finished first in her last competition in the United States today with a throw of 57.10m at Florida but that was far below the Rio qualification mark.

The Olympics qualification mark stands at 61m and the deadline for making it to the Rio Games is Monday.

In the two months Poonia trained and competed in the United States with funding from the Target Olympic Podium Scheme (TOPS) of the Sports Ministry, she could come up with a best effort of 59.49m. She had a personal best and national record of 64.76m which she did in 2012. She won the 2010 Delhi Commonwealth Games with a throw of 61.51m.

Poonia has taken part in three Olympics (2004, 2008 and 2012) and she is one of the few Indian track and field athletes to have qualified in the final rounds of any event in the Olympics when she finished sixth in 2012 London Games.

"I tried my best to qualify for Rio Olympics but in the end I could not do it. I think I did not have enough time to come back to my best after my knee surgery (last year)," Poonia told PTI from US.

"I will now look forward to the 2018 Commonwealth Games and Asian Games. I thank the Sports Ministry and Sports Authority of India for supporting me and allowing me to train and compete in the United States. I wish all my countrymen taking part in the Rio Olympic Games all the success," she said.

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#8
Three more athletes, including Renjith Maheswary, qualify for 2016 Rio Olympics

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Bengaluru: Three track and field athletes, including veteran triple jumper Renjith Maheswary, on Monday booked Rio Olympics berths with national record breaking performances in the 4th Indian Grand Prix here today.

Maheswary and Dharambir Singh (200m) shattered national records while Jinson Johnson ran the second fastest ever 800m race by an Indian to better Rio qualification marks on a dramatic day at Sree Kanteerava Stadium.

27-year-old Haryana lad Dharambir clocked 20.45 secs that not only bettered the Rio qualification mark of 20.50 secs but also improved his own national mark of 20.66 secs set at the Asian Championships in China last year.

Dharambir will be the first Indian to run in an Olympics 200m race after 36 years. The last Indian to do so in an Olympics was Tamil Nadu's Perumal Subramaniam in 1980 Games.

The men's and women's 4x400m relay teams are also certain to make the Rio cut as they both stood at the 13th spot after the end of European Championships in Amsterdam last night. The top 16 relay teams qualify for Rio Olympics and today is the deadline for Rio Games qualification for athletics events.

International Association of Athletics Federations is expected to release a list of all qualified relay teams for Rio Olympics tomorrow.

With three more track and field making the Rio cut today, the Indian track and field contingent will swell to 36 while the total number of Indian sportspersons for Rio Olympics will go up to 117.

It was a do-or-die for 30-year-old Kerala athlete Maheswary who was often criticised for landing with 'no marks' in two major events -- World Championships in 2011 and 2012 Olympics -- but today he leaped to glory with a national record of 17.30m while also bettering Rio qualification mark of 16.85m. The earlier national record was in the name of Arpinder Singh (17.17m) set in 2014.

Maheswary, who will be participating in his third straight Olympic Games after 2008 and 2012, has been trying to qualify for Rio since last year. However, each time he was missing the mark narrowly. His last best jump of 16.98m was achieved in Chennai three years ago.

Today, his third round jump of 16.93m did the trick and having achieved the qualification, Maheswary made a big leap of 17.30m that not only regained his national record back but also placed him third in the current world rankings behind Americans Christian Taylor (17.76) and Will Claye (17.65).

"I am happy with weather conditions and the favourable track here which helped him qualify for Rio. The weather was not congenial in Hyderabad (National Inter-State last month). I tried to qualify in Thailand but fouled a couple of jumps. The runway here is good and that helped me to accomplish my dream of making it to Rio," Maheswary said after the event.

Ranjith said he may go to Thailand for training for three to four weeks before flying to Rio.

Half-miler Johnson of Kerala virtually ran a 'solo race' to clock m1:45.98 secs and better the Rio qualifying norm of 1:46.00 in men's 800m. He had missed the Rio mark in the National Inter-State in Hyderabad 10 days ago by a mere 0.43 seconds.

25-year-old Johnson's time was the second best ever by an Indian at this distance after legendary Sriram Singh's marvelous 1:45.77 effort which placed him at seventh in the Montreal Olympics fourty years ago. Sriram's was the oldest 'living' national record.

"I have been waiting for this moment. The weather and track were good today that helped me to achieve the target," a delighted Johnson said after the race.

Meanwhile, fast improving woman long jumper V Neena leaped 6.66m on her second round today to be just 4cm short of the Olympic qualification mark. In less than two weeks, Neena raised her personal best by 21 cm.

Having started with a win in the National Inter-State in Hyderabad with 6.45m, Neena went on to grab the gold at Thai Open with a 1 cm improvement. Yesterday, she clinched the gold in the 3rd Indian Grand Prix here with a wind-aided 6.57m.

Another athlete who caught the eye today was javelin thrower Devender Singh, who recorded a personal best 80.21m to win the event. His previous best 79.65m was achieved while winning the Federation Cup at Mangaluru last year. The Rio mark in this event stands at 83m.

In a similar fashion, woman javelin thrower Annu Rani delivered 59.20m against the Rio mark of 62m to win the gold.

As expected Arokia Rajiv (46.24 secs) and M R Poovamma (52.85s) took the top spots in men's and women's 400m races respectively to end their Rio qualification efforts in disappointment. They are, however, expected to be in the men's and women's 4x400m relay teams in Rio.

Regarding the men's and women's 4x400m relay teams, Karnataka Athletics Association Secretary Chandrashekar Rai said that their Rio qualification is more or less confirmed.

"I was awake till 2 am this morning to confirm the qualification of India's relay teams," he said, referring to the results of the European Championships in Amsterdam.

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#9
2016 Rio Olympics: Complete list of Indian athletes qualified for XXXI Olympiad so far

The Indian Olympic Association is going to send the nation's largest ever delegation.

New Delhi: Veteran triple jumper Renjith Maheswary and two other athletes – Dharambir Singh (200m) and Jinson Johnson (800m) became the latest Indians to have qualified for the 2016 Rio Olympics.

Here is the latest list of Indians are taking part in the Games of the XXXI Olympiad, scheduled to take place from 5 to 21 August 2016 in Brazil.

Archery:

Atanu Das in men's individual
Bombayla Laishram in women's individual & women's team
Deepika Kumari in women's individual & women's team
Laxmirani Majhi in women's individual & women's team

Athletics:

Dharambir Singh in men's 200m
Muhammad Anas in men's 400m & 4x400m
Jinson Johnson in men's 800m
Thonakal Gopi in men's marathon
Kheta Ram in men's marathon
Nitender Singh Rawat in men's marathon
Baljinder Singh in men's 20k walk
Gurmeet Singh in men's 20k walk
Irfan Kolothum Thodi in men's 20k walk
Sandeep Kumar in men's 50km walk
Manish Singh in men's 50km walk
Kunhu Mohammed in men's 4x400m
Rajiv Arokia in men's 4x400m
Ayyasamy Dharun in men's 4x400m

Ankit Sharma in men's long jump
Renjith Maheshwary in men's triple jump
Inderjeet Singh in men's shot put
Vikas Gowda in men's discus throw

Dutee Chand in women's 100m
Srabani Nanda in women's 200m

Nirmala Sheoran in women's 400m & 4x400m
Tintu Luka in women's 800m & 4x400m
Lalita Babar in women's 3000m steeplechase
Sudha Singh in women's 3000m steeplechase & marathon
OP Jaisha in women's marathon
Kavita Raut in women's marathon
Khushbir Kaur in women's 20km walk
Sapna Punia in women's 20km walk
M R Poovamma in women's 4x400m
Anilda Thomas in women's 4x400m

Manpreet Kaur in women's shot put
Seema Antil in women's discus throw

Badminton:

Srikanth Kidambi in men's singles
Manu Attri in men's doubles
B Sumeeth Reddy in men's doubles
Saina Nehwal women's singles
PV Sindhu in women's singles
Jwala Gutta in women's doubles
Ashwini Ponnappa in women's doubles

Boxing:

Shiva Thapa in men's bantamweight (56kg)
Manoj Kumar in men's light welterweight (64kg)
Vikas Krishan Yadav in men's middleweight (75kg)

Hockey:

Both men's and women's teams

Golf:

Anirban Lahiri in men's event
Shiv Chawrasia in men's event
Aditi Ashok in women's event

Gymnastics:

Dipa Kumari in apparatus and all-around events

Judo:

Avtar Singh in men's middleweight category (90 kg)

Rowing:

Dattu Baban Bhokanal in men's single sculls

Shooting:

Abhinav Bindra in 10m air rifle
Gagan Narang in three rifle events in 10m air, 50m prone and 50m 3 positions
Chain Singh in two rifle events in 50m prone and 50m 3 positions
Jitu Rai in three pistol events in 10m air, 10m and 50m
Prakash Nanjappa in 50m pistol
Gurpreet in two pistol events in 10m air and 25m rapid fire
Kynan Chenai in trap
Manavjit Singh Sandhu in trap
Mairaj Ahmad Khan in skeet

Apurvi Chandela and Ayonika Paul in 10m air rifle
Heena Sidhu in two pistol events in 10m air and 25m

Swimming:

Sajan Prakash in men's 200m butterfly
Shivani Kataria in women's 200m freestyle

Table Tennis:

Sharath Kamal Achanta in men's singles
Soumyajit Ghosh in men's singles
Manika Batra in women's singles
Mouma Das in women's singles

Tennis:

Rohan Bopanna in men's & mixed doubles
Leander Paes in men's doubles
Sania Mirza in women's & mixed doubles
Prarthana Thombare in women's doubles

Weightlifting:

Sathish Sivalingam in men's under 77kg
Saikhom Mirabai Chanu in women's under 48kg

Wrestling:

Sandeep Tomar in men's freestyle under 57kg
Yogeshwar Dutt in men's freestyle under 65kg
Narsingh Pancham Yadav in men's freestyle under 74kg

Ravinder Khatri in men's Greco-Roman under 85kg
Hardeep Singh in men's Greco-Roman under 98kg

Vinesh Phogat in women's freestyle under 48kg
Babita Kumari in women's freestyle under 53kg
Sakshi Malik in women's freestyle under 58kg

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#10
Rio Olympics: PR Sreejesh replaces Sardar Singh as Indian hockey skipper for upcoming mega event

[Image: pr_sreejesh_0506.jpg]

New Delhi: India’s squads for Rio Olympics were on Tuesday announced by Hockey India president Narinder Batra.

Interestingly, the captains of both men's and women's team were changed by the federation.

Sushila Chanu will captain the team in the absence of Ritu Rani, while PR Sreejesh has taken over the captaincy from Sardar Singh.

Star performer in the last 12 months, Birendra Lakra will miss the event due to injury.

Several high-profile dignitaries like BJP president Amit Shah, BCCI president Anurag Thakur and sports minister Vijay Goel were present during the squads announcement in the capital.

​Women’s squad: Savita (GK), Navjot Kaur (midfielder), Deep Grace Ekka (defender), Monika (midfielder), Anuradha Devi (forward), Poonam Rani (forward), Vandana Kataria (forward), Deepika (defender), Namita Toppo (defender), Renuka Yadav (midfielder), Sunita Lakra (defender), Sushila Chanu (defender), Rani Rampal (forward), Preeti Dubey (forward), Lilima Minz (midfielder), Nikki Pradhan (forward).

On standby: Rajani Etimarpu & H. Lalruat Feli

Men’s squad: Harmanpreet Singh, Rupinder Pal Singh, Kothajit Singh, Surender Kumar, Manpreet , Sardar Singh, VR Raghunath, SK Uthappa, PR Sreejesh, Danish Mujtaba, Devender Walmiki, SV Sunil, Akashdeep Singh, Chinglensana Singh, Ramandeep Singh, Nikkin Thimmaiah.

On standby: Pardeep Mor, Vikas Dahiya

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