A new core group of the Target Olympic Podium Scheme (TOPS) for the next Olympic cycle will be drawn up from among the country’s elite athletes after the earlier one was dissolved at the end of Tokyo Games, the Sports Authority of India (SAI) said on Wednesday.
India achieved unprecedented success in the Tokyo Games this year by winning seven medals, including a historic gold in athletics, mainly due to the funding and support of the athletes under TOPS which was established in 2014.
The SAI said it is holding discussions with the National Sports Federations to finalise the fresh list of athletes in the TOPS core group ahead of its meeting next month.
“Inclusion of India’s elite athletes in the Core Group of the TOPS for the next Olympic cycle is being discussed with NSFs by SAI ahead of the meeting scheduled in October to finalise the fresh list of athletes in the TOPS Core Group,” a release said.
“The Core Group list, which was dissolved at the end of the Olympics and Paralympics, will be drawn up again at a meeting which will have representatives from national sports federations and the Indian Olympic Association as its members.”
The SAI said following the finalisation of the list of TOPS core group, all support will be extended to the selected athletes, as per the norms of the scheme.
“TOPS has been the key scheme in extending personalised support to athletes for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and Paralympics and will be supporting athletes in the next Olympic cycle as well.
“It is also expected that some of the athletes who are in the Developmental Group of TOPS and are training for Olympics 2024 and 2028 will also be considered for inclusion in the Core Group.”
The Developmental Group of TOPS was added last year to groom promising athletes for future Olympics. The next Olympics will be held in 2024 in Paris.