India's Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports sanctioned 634 athletes for the upcoming Asian Games 2023 on Friday, August 25. However, they scrapped over 200 names from the 850-member list recommended by the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) for the 38 sporting disciplines.

India are now cleared to send 634 athletes, 320 men and 314 women across 38 sporting events to Hangzhou. For India, 572 participated in the previous edition of the Asian Games at Jakarta and Palembang in 2018 where they bagged 70 medals. The return of cricket and Indian football teams' surprise qualification boosts India's number in the upcoming tournament and also their hopes to finish high in the medal standings.

The 19th edition of the tournament will kick off on September 23 with five new sports Esports, baseball, softball, karate, and sport climbing making their debuts. Cricket was played during the 2010 and 2014 edition of the

tournament but this is the first time India are sending their teams to the Asian Games. 

Men's second-string side and women's senior cricket team are selected for the tournament and both are tipped to clinch gold medals. Star opener Ruturaj Gaikwad is leading the Indian men's team as senior players are set to feature in the ICC Men's ODI World Cup 2023 starting on October 5. 

The Indian football team also qualified for the tournament after getting an exemption from the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports upon an appeal from the Indian Olympic Association. Captain Sunil Chhetri is among the three senior players selected to lead the U-23 team in the Asian Games 2023.

Meanwhile, in a letter sent by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports to the Indian Olympic Association, the former instructed the association to ensure dope tests of all the participants in the coming days.
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