Tuesday, May 17Sports News Portal

Archery, Breaking News

Deepika Kumari, Atanu Das dropped from India’s TOPS list due to below-par performances

The husband-wife duo, both three-time Olympians, returned empty-handed from Tokyo 2020 and failed to impress at the national ranking meet.

Tokyo Olympians Deepika Kumari and Atanu Das have been dropped from India’s Target Olympic Podium Scheme (TOPS) list after disappointing performances at the  national archery ranking tournament 2022 earlier in January.

TOPS is the Indian sports ministry’s flagship programme dedicated to identifying and funding India’s Olympic medal hopefuls. The Mission Olympic Cell (MOC) is the body which takes all the decisions pertaining to which athletes make it to the TOPS list.

The MOC had decided to review support for the Deepika Kumari and Atanu Das back in December and decided to drop the husband-wife duo from the list on Thursday.

Deepika Kumari and Atanu Das, both three-time Olympians, are considered top Indian archers. Deepika Kumari, a former world No. 1 women’s recurve archer, is one of the most decorated Indian archers of all time, with medals at the Commonwealth and Asian Games as well as the world championships under her belt.

Atanu Das, too, has won multiple titles at the continental and world stage. Last year, Deepika and Atanu won the individual women’s and men’s gold medals at the archery World Cup gold at Guatemala City.

However, both have failed to impress in their recent outings. Besides drawing a blank at Tokyo 2020, Deepika and Atanu disappointed at the archery World Cup finals in Yankton, USA in October 2021. Both were eliminated in the first round at the national level ranking tournament earlier this month, which proved to be the final straw.

“Considering their below-par performances in the event, MOC decided to not include them in the TOPS list for now,” the sports ministry said.

Both Deepika Kumari and Atanu Das have taken the decision in their stride and have vowed to bounce back stronger.

“I appreciate that SAI officials informed me before the MOC meeting itself that there was a possibility of me being excluded from the TOP Scheme. I will be motivated to return with good scores in the competitions ahead,” Deepika Kumari said.

“We were very disturbed that we could not get the results we wanted in the Olympic Games. And we took a break from competitive archery after the Olympic Games. I know it is a matter of time before we find the form and get back to where we belong,” Atanu Das added.

Photo : olympics.com

Website : olympics.com