The Road to Tokyo: A week in quotes

Joint silver medalists, Michael Phelps of United States, Laszlo Cseh of Hungary, Chad Guy Bertrand le Clos of South Africa, and gold medalist Joseph Schooling of Singapore (third from left) celebrate on the podium during the medals ceremony in the Men's 100m Butterfly Final at Rio 2016.  (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)
Joint silver medalists, Michael Phelps of United States, Laszlo Cseh of Hungary, Chad Guy Bertrand le Clos of South Africa, and gold medalist Joseph Schooling of Singapore (third from left) celebrate on the podium during the medals ceremony in the Men's 100m Butterfly Final at Rio 2016. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

Athletes around the world have been busying themselves with less than a year to go while some nations have allowed training complexes to open and others even giving the green light for competitive action to start.

Tokyo 2020 has been speaking to several athletes whose journey to the Olympic and Paralympic Games is slowly gathering pace.

Target Tokyo 2020: Team India aim to rewrite 40-year-old history

Indian team defender Kothajit Singh is part of the squad preparing for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
Indian team defender Kothajit Singh is part of the squad preparing for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
2015 Getty Images

Sometimes small changes make a big difference to the way a team performs, and we are looking to make those small changes to our game.

If we fine-tune our game properly, we will certainly be a much better unit at the Olympics

The last time an Indian hockey team won an Olympic medal was at the Olympic Games Moscow 1980. But now 40 years on, the men's national team is aiming for a podium finish at next year's summer Olympic Games in Tokyo.

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Namibia's Johannes Nambala targets ‘history’ at Tokyo 2020

Johannes Nambala of Nambia celebrates winning the Men's 400m T13 at the IPC World Para Athletics Championships 2019 Dubai (Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images)
Johannes Nambala of Nambia celebrates winning the Men's 400m T13 at the IPC World Para Athletics Championships 2019 Dubai (Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images)
2019 Getty Images

I have learnt from my mistakes (Rio 2016). I have improved since then.

I have no doubt the Tokyo 2020 Games will be remarkable

Johannes Nambala, who won Namibia's first gold at the 2013 World Championships, wants to make history at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games. The Para athlete wants to succeed this time around following heart-break four years ago at Rio 2016.

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Kye Whyte: Flying the family flag in pursuit of Olympic glory

Kye Whyte of Great Britain celebrates winning silver after the Men's Final during the 2018 European Championships in Glasgow, Scotland. This event forms part of the first multi-sport European Championships.  (Photo by Jack Thomas/Getty Images)
Kye Whyte of Great Britain celebrates winning silver after the Men's Final during the 2018 European Championships in Glasgow, Scotland. This event forms part of the first multi-sport European Championships. (Photo by Jack Thomas/Getty Images)
2018 Getty Images

I’m not going there to get second or third.

Great Britain's BMX racing World Cup winner Kye Whyte is aiming for the top step of the podium at next year's Olympic Games. Tokyo 2020 caught up with him to talk about about growing up in a BMX-mad family, his journey to the top of the game and what it would mean to win the greatest prize of all - an Olympic gold medal. 

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Melissa Tapper: 'No player is Para or able-bodied in my head'

Melissa Tapper of Australia  plays a Women's Singles preliminary match against Caroline Kumahara of Brazil at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
Melissa Tapper of Australia plays a Women's Singles preliminary match against Caroline Kumahara of Brazil at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
2016 Getty Images

No player is Para or able-bodied in my head

Table tennis star Melissa Tapper made history at Rio 2016 by becoming the first - and only - Australian athlete to compete in both the Olympic and Paralympic Games. Now with Tokyo 2020 less than a year away, she's gunning for gold at next year’s Paralympic Games.

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Joseph Schooling: 'I still want to win more than ever'

Joseph Schooling of Singapore celebrates winning the gold medal in the Men's 100m Butterfly at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.  (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)
Joseph Schooling of Singapore celebrates winning the gold medal in the Men's 100m Butterfly at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)
2016 Getty Images

I want to be the best version I can be. Medal wise, of course, everyone who goes to the Olympics, most of them want to win. If not why do we do this every day.

At Rio 2016, he toppled swimming royalty when he defeated Olympic champion Michael Phelps at the 100m butterfly - to claim Singapore's first and only gold medal at the Olympic Games whilst breaking a new Olympic record. Now in the US to continue his training, Schooling eyes Tokyo 2020 not only to surpass his previous successes but also to become the best version of himself.

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Willy Hernangómez and his affair with the podium

Willy Hernangomez Geuer and #41 Juancho Hernangomez greet supporters during the quarter-final match against Poland at the 2019 FIBA World Cup (Photo by Yifan Ding/Getty Images)
Willy Hernangomez Geuer and #41 Juancho Hernangomez greet supporters during the quarter-final match against Poland at the 2019 FIBA World Cup (Photo by Yifan Ding/Getty Images)
2019 Getty Images

We still haven't absorbed the magnitude of winning a World Cup.

It is true that the feeling of emotion, happiness and the relief of a good job done is something that I remember.

It was just over a year ago that Spain clinched their second FIBA World Cup and now one of the teams NBA players, Willy Hernangomez is hoping to turn is Rio 2016 bronze medal into gold come next summer. The 26-year-old comes from a family of basketball players which could see his younger brother, Juancho join him in Tokyo.

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