Uncertainty of
time is the biggest headache for athletes. Just when they set their target on
Paris 2024, Asian Games have been postponed leaving them in a qualm. The
next Olympic Games are three years from the previous COVID-19 pandemic
postponed Games in Tokyo. Athletes got a narrow window to realise their dream
of competing in the Paris Olympics. Unlike a four-year time frame which is the
usual case between two Olympics, the next Games keep athletes on their toes as
there is no sign of the virus going away too soon. The Paris Olympics is
expected to oversee the world’s transition from the COVID era to the buzzing

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But just when
the preparations for the Asian Games 2022 were at their peak, the Chinese Asian
Games organising committee announced the postponement of the continental
showpiece event scheduled in Hangzhou in September this year due to the rise in positive cases.

It came as a big
blow. Indian athletes, who were getting ready for back to back multilateral
events, will now have to settle with the Commonwealth Games, which do not serve
as the Olympic qualifying platforms.

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The Asian Games
is important for both individual athletes and hockey teams as a pole position
enables them to confirm their berths in the Paris 2024. For the Indian hockey
teams – men’s and women’s – the Asian Games are golden opportunities given the
fact that the Indian sides are favourites for the gold medals. The
International Olympic Committee (IOC) gives the hockey events a direct
qualifying status.

For Indian
shuttlers, the ranking points achieved in the highly competitive Asian Games
play a key role in their qualification for the Olympic Games.

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athletes also hold chances to directly qualify for the Paris Olympics if they
produce gold medal-winning performances. Since Neeraj Chopra’s historic gold
medal-winning performance in Tokyo Olympics, athletics is being seen as a medal
discipline in India.

Now as the Games
have been postponed indefinitely, their preparations will be affected and, for
many, the chances of qualifying for the Olympics will become uncertain.

Apart from being
an Olympic qualifying platform, the Asian Games serve athletes as a brilliant
preparatory event. Athletes who perform here go back home with critical inputs
of their progress which become handy at the later stage.

Now as the Games
have been postponed indefinitely, Asian athletes once again found themselves on
the periphery of uncertainty. After the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, Asian Games are
the second biggest multisport events that have been postponed due to the
COVID-19 pandemic.