Indian Contingent Arrives in Beijing

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Aug. 6 – Indian athletes have arrived at Beijing's Olympic Games village with the first batch of shooters, boxers and swimmers, along with their coaches, arriving in Beijin on Monday.

Deputy Chef de Mission Baljit Singh Sethi told the Hindu that all nine shooters, five boxers and four swimmers have reached the village while the remaining of the 57-member contingent and its support staff of 42 will reach there in separate batches before the opening ceremony on 08-08-08.

Indian hopes are pinned on Athens Olympics Silver medalist shooter Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore and world champion Manavjit Singh who were the first Indians participants to enter the village to practise. The Indians are chiefly resting their hopes on shooters, boxers and the star tennis duo of Leander Paes and Mahesh Bhupathi for Olympic glory.

A recent pricewaterhouse Coopers report on Economic Briefing Paper: Modelling Olympics Performance’ expects India to win atleast 6 medals this Olympics.

The report goes on to say that the number of medals won by countries increases with its population and wealth, but less proportionately. While India’s population and average income has increased, performance in the medals tally has been pedestrian at best. But there has been an improvement. The bronze medals in Atlanta (1996, Leander Paes) and Sydney (2000, Karnam Malleswari) were followed by Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore’s double-trap silver at the 2004 Athens Olympics.