Olympic-bound Indian athletes training in Rio time zone areas: Sports Minister
New Delhi: Sports Minister Sarbananda Sonowal on Tuesday said that Olympics-bound Indian athletes have been sent for training in places which have same time zone as the Brazilian city of Rio de Janeiro so that they can acclimatise properly for the Games beginning August 5.
Sonowal said those who have qualified in disciplines like archery and shooting are already in North America -- in the
same time zone -- so that they can acclimatise properly and don't face jet lag.
"Events like Archery and Shooting needs better concentration and devoid of tension. Hence they are currently doing practice in the same time zone," he told PTI.
The Olympic Games village in Rio will open on July 24 and Indian contingent will reach the city accordingly.
Sonowal also said that India will send its largest ever contingent -- about 110 sports persons -- to Rio Olympics.
"So far 91 athletes have qualified for Olympics in Rio. Some trials are yet to be held. We expect that around 110 athletes will participate in Olympics this time. This will be the largest ever Indian contingent to Olympics," he told PTI.
Among those who qualified include 59 sportspersons, who will take part in individual events, and 32 hockey players -- both men and women.
In 2012 Olympics, India had sent 80 athletes.
The Minister said special assistance has been given to sporting talents for their training both in India and abroad.
On opening day for Athletics at Olympics, 54 sprinters hit a personal best.
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AFI also decided against pulling out long jumper M Sreeshankar and 20km race walker KT Irfan from the Games despite a dip in their form.
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