CWG2018: New golds set new goals for future India

(By Rahul Pandey)

Its been almost a week since the CWG’s action began at the Gold Coast, Australia and to many game pundits, it has been quite a surprise as to how India has performed so far. After day-5, India stands 3rd in the medals tally, with 10 gold and 19 overall medals.  Not that the Indian contingent was thought of as underrated, its just the result in events such as Weightlifting, Table Tennis that has left many wondering as to how the Indian athletes have orchestrated such a brilliant show despite being tagged as underdogs.

Out of the 19 total medals, 8 [5 golds, 2 silver, 1 bronze] have been bagged by the weightlifters, a new feat for this generation that has set new goals for the upcoming ones.

On the opening day of CWG 2018, Poojary Gururaja opened India’s medal account, claiming a silver in men’s 56 kg category. By the time half of India had just finished finding apt words for their social media status, congratulating Gururaja, Saikhom Mirabai Chanu made sure she got her spot in next day’s newspaper headlines by winning gold in women’s 48 kg category.

From that day, the Indian weightlifters took to winning as a routine phenomenon. Sanjita Chanu [Gold, women’s 53 kg category], Satish Kumar Sivalingam [Gold, men’s 77 kg category], Venkat Rahul Ragala [Gold, men’s 85 kg category], Punam Yadav [Gold, women’s 69 kg category], Pradeep Singh [Silver, men’s 105 kg category] and Vikas Thakur [Bronze, men’s 94 kg category] have all made a huge impact to India running a riot in Weightlifting events.

There were some disappointing moments as well, with Deepak Lather [69 kg], Raja Muthupandi [62 kg], Gurdeep Singh [+105 kg], Vandna Gupta [63 kg], Lalchhanhimi [90 kg] and Purnima Pandey [+90  kg] failing to make any serious impact on the big stage. But that can’t undermine the supreme status that the Indian weightlifters have earned in the land down under.

Another game that has earned plaudits from the pundits and the fans has been Table Tennis. For many years, the domination of East Asian countries such as China, Japan, Singapore, Malaysia etc. in TT has been a sight to bemoan for others. Gold Coast 2018, became a reality check for many, as India bagged gold in both men’s and women’s team category. When the women’s team took the centre stage on the winner’s podium on Sunday evening, they became the first ever group of players to win a Commonwealth gold for India in Table Tennis but just a day later, the men’s team made sure they weren’t the only ones. While the women’s team registered a 3-1 victory in the final against Singapore, the men’s team marked their moment with a 3-0 drubbing of Nigeria.

By the end of day 5, India have also earned a gold in mixed team Badminton [a first in the history of CWG], in women’s 10m air pistol [Manu Bhaker] and in 25m pistol [Heena Sidhu], a silver in 10m men’s air pistol [Om Mitharval] and in 10m women’s air pistol [Heena Sidhu] and a bronze in women’s 10m air rifle [Apurvi Chandela]. But Shooting and Badminton were always considered as strong suits for India. It is events such as Weightlifting and Table Tennis that have opened new gates for us. Gates that lead us to a new tomorrow, a new India.

Player/Team Category Medal
Heena Sidhu Women’s pistol 25m Gold
Mixed team Badminton Gold
Jitu Rai Men’s air pistol 10m Gold
Women’s team Table Tennis Gold
Men’s team Table Tennis Gold
Manu Bhaker Women’s air pistol 10m Gold
Punam Yadav Women’s weightlifting [69kg] Gold
Venkat Rahul Ragala Men’s weightlifting [85kg] Gold
Satish Kumar Sivalingam Men’s weightlifting [77kg] Gold
Sanjita Chanu Women’s weightlifting [53kg] Gold
Mirabai Chanu Women’s weightlifting [48kg] Gold
Mehuli Ghosh Women’s air rifle 10m Silver
Om Mitharval Men’s air pistol 10m Silver
Pradeep Singh Men’s weightlifting [105kg] Silver
Heena Sidhu Women’s air pistol 10m Silver
Poojary Gururaja Men’s weightlifting [56kg] Silver
Apurvi Chandela Women’s air rifle 10m Bronze
Vikas Thakur Men’s weightlifting [94kg] Bronze
Ravi Kumar Men’s air rifle 10m Bronze
Deepak Lather Men’s weightlifting [69 kg] Bronze


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