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258 athletes shortlisted across 12 disciplines for TOPS developmental scheme
New Delhi, Aug 5 - 258 athletes have been shortlisted in 12 sporting disciplines by the Sports Authority of India's (SAI) Mission Olympic Cell who will be part of the Target Olympic Podium Scheme (TOPS) Developmental Group, Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju said on Wednesday. This includes 85 who were selected before the start of the lockdown, said the Sport Authority of India (SAI).
16 athletes have been shortlisted in athletics, 34 in archery, 27 in badminton, 4 in cycling, 7 in table tennis, 70 in shooting, 14 in swimming, 11 in judo, 36 in boxing, 16 in weightlifting, 5 in rowing and 18 in wrestling.
"Establishing Junior TOPS and extending support to the developmental group is a critical measure to realize India's dream of being among the Top 10 countries in the 2028 Olympics. It takes 8 years to groom an athlete into an Olympic medal probable and we have started right on time for the 2028 Olympics," Rijiju said at the review meeting held by the ministry and SAI.
Formal induction of the athletes in the development group would be undertaken after setting an effective monitoring mechanism for an athlete's progress in the long run.
Towards this, it has been decided that performance benchmarks will be established for individual athletes for next four years, in consultation with all stakeholders, including the athlete, coach, High Performance Directors/ Chief National Coach of National Sports Federations (NSF).
A monthly Out Of Pocket Allowance of Rs. 25,000 will be given to every athlete.
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