New Delhi: India had 56 competitors at the Beijing Olympics four years ago. The number has risen to 76 and is expected to be 85 at the July 27-August 12 London Games.
In 13 events, 56 men and 20 women have booked their Olympic berths and the number is expected to go up further as quite a few disciplines are still in the process of holding their qualifiers. Sports minister Ajay Maken expects it to be 85.
The Beijing number came down drastically because the Indian hockey team failed to qualify. This time around the eight times Olympic champions are through ad a 16-member squad has been named.
The expectations will be high from the 11 shooters, five wrestlers and eight boxers. Rifle shooter Abinav Bindra, who won India's first individual gold medal in Beijing, will be looking for an encore. Another rifle shooter Gagan Narang and shot-gun exponent Ronjan Singh Sodhi are also potential medal prospects.
Among the wrestlers, Beijing Games bronze medallist Sushil Kumar and 2012 Asian champion Yogeshwar Dutt are medal hopes.
While boxer Vijender Singh, a bronze medallist in Beijing, five times women's world champion M.C.Mary Kom are also potential medal winners. For Mary Kom this is the first and definitely last opportunity to return with a medal from London. She can't ask for a better platform than to end her illustrious career on a high. Women's boxing has been included in the Olympics for the first time.
The government has spent around Rs.238 crores on training the athletes and an additional Rs.20 crores on foreign coaches.
List of athletes who have qualified so far:
Laishram Bombayla Devi, Deepika Kumari, Chekrovolu Swuro and Jayanta Talukdar
Men's 20 km walk: Gurmeet Singh, Baljinder Singh, Irfan Kolothum Thodi
Women's discus throw: Krishna Poonia, Seema Antil
Men's discus throw: Vikas Gowda
Men's shot put: Om Prakash Karhana
Women's 800m: Tintu Luka
Men's triple jump: Renjith Maheshwary
Women's 3000 m steeplechase: Sudha Singh
Women's triple jump: Mayookha Johny
Men's 50km walk: Basanta Bahadur Rana or Sandeep Kumar
Men's marathon: Ram Singh Yadav
Women's singles: Saina Nehwal
Men's singles: Parupalli Kashyap
Mixed doubles: Jwala Gutta, Valiyaveetil Diju
Women's doubles: Jwala Gutta, Ashwini Ponnappa
Men's light flyweight(49kg): Devendro Singh
Men's bantamweight (56kg): Shiva Thapa
Men's lightweight (60kg): Jai Bhagwan
Men's light welterweight (64kg): Manoj Kumar
Men's welterweight (69kg): Vikas Krishan Yadav
Men's middleweight (75kg): Vijender Singh
Men's light heavyweight (81kg): Sumit Sangwan
Women's flyweight (51kg): Mary Kom
Goalkeepers: Bharat Chetri (captain) and P.R. Sreejesh.
Defenders: V.R.Raghunath, Ignace Tirkey, Sandeep Singh.
Midfielders: Sardar Singh (vice captain), Gurbaj Singh, Birendra Lakra, Manpreet Singh.
Forwards: S.V. Sunil, Gurwinder Singh Chandi, Shivendra Singh, Danish Mujtaba, Tushar Khandker, Dharamvir Singh, S.K. Uthappa.
Stand-bys: Sarvanjit Singh and Kothajit Singh
Women's 63kg: Garima Chaudhary
Rowing: India has qualified two boats with up to three athletes in men's single sculls and lightweight double sculls
Men's 50m rifle 3 positions: Sanjeev Rajput
Men's 50m rifle prone: Joydeep Karmakar
Men's 10m air rifle: Abhinav Bindra, Gagan Narang
Men's 25m rapid fire pistol: Vijay Kumar
Men's double trap: Ronjan Sodhi
Men's trap: Manavjit Singh Sandhu
Women's 25m pistol: Rahi Sarnobat, Heena Sidhu
Women's 10m air pistol: Annuraj Singh
Women's trap: Shagun Chowdhary
Men's 100m freestyle: Virdhawal Khade
Men's 100m breaststroke: Sandeep Sejwal
Men's 200m freestyle: Aaron D'Souza or Virdhawal Khade
Men's 200m breaststroke: Sandeep Sejwal
Men's 1500m freestyle: Saurabh Sangvekar
Men's singles: Soumyajit Ghosh
Women's singles: Ankita Das
Mens' doubles: Leander Paes
Men's 69kg: Katulu Ravi Kumar
Women's 48kg: Ngangbam Soniya Chanu
Men's freestyle 55kg: Amit Kumar
Men's freestyle 60kg: Yogeshwar Dutt
Men's freestyle 66kg: Sushil Kumar
Men's freestyle 74kg: Narsingh Pancham Yadav
Women's freestyle 55kg: Geeta Phogat