2014 Commonwealth Games: India happy with top-5 finish, officials` arrest a let down
Glasgow: India achieved their objective of finishing in the top five nations at the 20th Commonwealth Games post a successful campaign which threw up new stars, but the arrest of two officials on charges of alleged assault here seems to have dampened the jubilant mood.
A 216-strong team of Indian athletes bagged 15 gold, 30 silver and 19 bronze for a total haul of 64 medals to finish fifth behind table-toppers England (58, 59, 57), Australia (two - 49, 42, 46), Canada (three - 32, 16, 34) and host Scotland (four - 19, 15, 19).
India had finished second behind Australia in 2010 Delhi edition but considering that some disciplines, from which the hosts had won medals, were either dropped or pruned down in Glasgow, it was a creditable performance by the Indians in the recently concluded Games.
As expected, India collected maximum medals from shooting as the marksmen bagged 17 medals (4, 9, 4). The wrestlers though had the most gold count with 13 overall medals (5, 6, 2).
Weightlifters performed above expectations as they bagged 12 medals (3, 4, 5) with India topping the tally in that sport. In judo, India won their biggest haul of four medals (two silver and two bronze) surpassing the two each they had won in both 1990 and 2002.
The powerlifters also contributed their bit as Rajinder Rahelu won a silver in the heavyweight division while Sakina Khatun clinched bronze in the women`s lightweight section.
In hockey, India won their second consecutive silver in the Games after being outclassed by Olympic and world champions Australia 0-4 in the final.
Badminton was another sport which brought the nation laurels with four medals (1, 2, 2).
Parupalli Kashyap bagged a gold to become the first Indian male shuttler in 32 years to win the singles title in Commonwealth Games after Syed Modi in 1982.
There was, however, disappointment in women`s singles with rising star P V Sindhu losing in the semifinals and finishing with a bronze. Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Ponappa failed to defend the gold they had won women`s doubles in 2010 Delhi Games as they lost in the final here.
The biggest surprise of the Glasgow edition for India was the gold won by Dipika Pallikal and Joshana Chinappa in women`s doubles squash. They created history by winning India`s first ever gold medal in CWG squash.
India`s boxing, table tennis and track and field show was a bit of a let down while the country won unexpected two medals in para sports and gymnast Dipa Karmarkar bagging a surprise bronze in women`s vault event after 2010 Delhi Games medal winner Ashish Kumar`s campaign ended in disappointment.
Star boxer Vijender Singh lost in middleweight (75kg) final bout as Indian pugilists won five medals, four silver and one bronze. They had won seven medals, including three gold in 2010.
In table tennis, India won just a bronze from the men`s doubles pair of Achanta Sharath Kamal and Anthony Amalraj while the country had bagged five medals, including a gold, in 2010 Delhi Games.
The nation got one gold, one silver and one bronze from track and field events with Vikas Gowda`s yellow metal in the men`s discus throw the only standout performance.
Off the track India had to face embarrassment after Indian Olympic Association (IOA) Secretary General Rajiv Mehta and unattached international wrestling referee Virender Malik were arrested by Police Scotland on charges of alleged assault and drunk driving.
On the international front, the Glasgow Games saw sprint king Usain Bolt in action after missing out the Delhi edition. Bolt took Jamaica to gold in men`s 4x100m relay to set a CWG record in front of a packed Hampden Park crowd to the huge delight of the organisers.
So regardless of the two dope positive cases, the Glasgow show has been termed as the "Standout Games" in the history of the movement by Commonwealth Games Federation chief executive Mike Hooper.