PV Sindhu, Sakshi Malik among Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award winners. Photograph: (Getty)
Dipa Karmakar, Sania Mirza and Saina Nehwal also feature in the line-up by the search engine
PV Sindhu and Sakshi Malik did not just win medals and the hearts of millions of Indians with their feat at the Rio Olympics, they are also on Google's list of the most searched Indian athletes. The states which have generated the maximum search interest in the Olympics include Arunachal Pradesh, Tripura, Meghalaya, Manipur and Sikkim, possibly since many of the players in the Indian contingent belong to these states.
According to the Olympics search trends curated by the search engine on August 18, seven out of 10 of the most searched athletes in India in the last three days have been women. Top Searched Indian athletes in the last three days included PV Sindhu, Sakshi Malik, Srikanth Kidambi, Dipa Karmakar, Sania Mirza, Saina Nehwal, Vinesh Phogat, Lalita Babar, Vikas Krishan Yadav, and Narsingh Pancham Yadav. On August 8, Deepa Karmakar was the most searched athlete on Google as she created history moving into the final of one of the most difficult gymnastic vault. Last week, Google searches peaked as fans cheered for her in the final battle.
Besides their favourite atheletes, people also kept a close watch on their opponents. Lin Dan, the Chinese badminton player who defeated Srikanth Kadambi, Nozomi Okuhara from Japan and Wang Yihan from China, who lost to P V Sindhu in their respective battles, also made it to the top five searches. Overall, badminton and wrestling remained the top searched sports by Indians.
The country is currently ranked 11th in the global trends in terms of searches for the 'Olympics' over the last seven days.Indian fans also showed a great deal of excitement and enthusiasm for Jamaican sprinter and the world's fastest man, Usain Bolt, who remained the most searched foreign athlete on Google India. US swimming sensation Michael Phelps was also much-searched by Indian fans.