New Delhi: Once again, it was the sport of weightlifting that gave India two medals on Day 2 of the Commonwealth Games at Gold Coast. Indian women's lifter Sanjita Chanu, from Mizoram, followed on the footsteps of Mirabai Chanu and won gold in the 53kg category. The second medal, a bronze though, was pocketed by male lifter Deepak Lather in the 69kg category. Interestingly, it was Lather's birthday on Friday and he couldn't have had any better gift than that bronze medal.
Though, it was Sanjita who added a gold to India's medal tally on Friday by dominating the Carrara Arena. She created a Commonwealth Games record by lifting 84 kg in snatch. By doing that, she also broke Swarti Singh's Games record of 83 kg created in the last edition of the Games. When she reached the clean and jerk stage of the competition, Sanjita was as smooth as she was during snatch.
Very much like Mirabai, she began by opting to lift 104 in her first attempt, a weight none of the other opponents had opted for. She bettered the next attempt by lifting 108kg and failed in third while trying 112kg.
Papua New Guinea lifter Loa Dika Toua, who clinched the silver, accumulated a total of 182, 10kg less than Sanjita in the final total. Canada's Rachel LeBlanc-Bazinet took the bronze at 181 kg.
In the men's 69 kg, Deepak Lather missed the silver by a whisker. Having lifted 155, 159 in his first two attempts of clean & jerk, he failed in the final attempt of 162 kg. Had he completed that lift, he could have totalled 298 kg, and which could have forced the Sri Lankan lifter to take the bronze. But that was not to be and India collected their first bronze through Lather.
The only disappointment for India in weightlifting proved to be Saraswati Rout, who despite being pitted as a medal contender in the women's 58 kg, failed miserably in all her snatch attempts. Because of that, she did not feature in the next leg of the competition -- clean and jerk.
If these were the two medal winners, India otherwise experienced a mixed day in Gold Coast. First, let us discuss the good results. In hockey, India women's team made a U-turn and beat Malaysia 4-1. After the blip against Wales, where India conceded three late goals and rued a 2-0 lead, Friday saw them maintaining their tempo.
Talking of racquet sports, India carried their winning momentum from yesterday and thrashed the Scots 5-0 in the team event in badminton. Saina Nehwal, Kidambi Srikanth, women's doubles pair of Ashwini Ponappa and N Sikki Reddy, men's doubles pair of Satwik Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty and the Mixed doubles pair of Pranaav Chopra and Sikki Reddy did not lose a game and brushed aside the Scottish challenge.
From the squash court, India's best medal hope Dipika Pallikal Karthik lost her Round of 16 match against England's Alison Waters. Pallikal Lost in straight games. On the other hand, Joshna Chinappa won her Round of 16 tie against Australian Tamika Saxby.
There was some disappointment as well as India's male squash player Vikram Malhotra lost to English opponent Nick Matthew 3-1. Vikram lost the first game, pulled the next one back but conceded the following two to bow out of the Games.
Boxing is another sport in which India remains highly confident of picking up quite some medals. And as far as India's campaign was concerned, it was on track. Indian pugilist Naman Tanwar cruised to the quarterfinals of the 91kg category defeating Tanzania's Haruna Mhandu.
Tanwar boxed with confidence and faced no competition from his opponent. He dropped down his guard and landed telling blows to win the bout with a unanimous decision. Later, in the 46-49kg category, India's Amit Kumar too crafted her way to the quarters. Like Tanwar, he too beat the Ghanian opponent and won by a unanimous decision.