India finished fourth in the Commonwealth Games medals tally with 61 medals in total including 22 gold, 16 silver, and 23 bronze, with the country’s athletes standing up to the occasion.
However, there were some Indian medal hopeful athletes who faced disappointment-
Manika Batra had a lot to prove in this edition of the Commonwealth Games, having won the women’s team gold, a mixed doubles bronze with G. Sathiyan and India’s first-ever gold in the women’s table tennis singles at the 2018 Games.
The women’s team lost to Malaysia 3-2 in the quarterfinals at Birmingham 2022. After which, she along with Sathiyan lost to another Malaysian pair of Javen Choong and Kara Lyne 2-3 in the quarterfinals. On the same day, she failed to defend her singles title, losing in four straight sets to Singapore’s Jian Zeng.
A similar fate unfolded for Manika as she along with Divya Chitale were defeated by Charlotte Carey and Anna Hursey of Wales 1-3 in yet another quarterfinal. Batra failed to live up to the expectations having lost all the four events she was competing in the quarterfinals.
Olympic bronze medallist Lovlina Borgohain lost to Wales’ Rosie Eccles in the quarterfinal of the women’s boxing light middleweight category. Eccles beat Lovlina by a split decision of 2-3 after receiving a warning in the second round.
This loss can be attributed to the drama that took place before the Games began. Lovlina complained that her preparations were getting affected due to the ‘continuous harassment” of her coaches.
Consequently, her coach Sandhya Gurung was added to the squad, at the expense of the team doctor of the boxing contingent, Dr Karanvir Chib.
(Excerpts from an article published in Sportstar on August 5, 2022)
The veteran Indian boxer Shiva Thapa defeated Pakistan’s Suleman Baloch in the men’s light welterweight round of 32 with a thumping majority of 5-0 at the Commonwealth Games.
However, all was not good for the boxer as he exited the very next round getting defeated by Scotland’s Reese Lynch 4-1. While Thapa landed backhand punches accurately leading to Lynch falling in the first round and gaining five 10s, the Indian became defensive in the next two rounds leading to him losing points. Thapa gets four nines and a 10 in the second round, while Lynch gets four 10s and one nine.
In the third round, Thapa gets five nines from the judges in comparison to Lynch’s 10s, leading him to lose 4-1 and lose a chance to win his first Commonwealth Games medal.
Having won CWG medals twice in the previous two editions, she was touted to win this year also. However, she lost her singles quarterfinal match against Canada’s Hollie Naughton in three straight sets.
In the mixed doubles, she and Harinder Pal Singh Sandhu lost to Australia’s Donna Lobban and Cameron Pilley 0-2 in the round of 16.
Yet again, she saw herself in a similar spot, but this time along with Dipika Pallikal after they lost 0-2 to the Malaysian pairing of Chan Yiwen and Ampandi Ainaa.
The gymnast from West Bengal had won two consecutive bronze medals at the 2019 and 2022 Asian Championships and had the hopes of the nation winning a medal in sport this edition.
Pranati Nayak along with Ruthuja Nataraj and Protistha Samanta represented team India in the artistic gymnastics women’s team event finishing last with a score of 102. 650.
A gymnastics medal prospect became a reality when she qualified third for the vault finals with 13.275 points These hopes were shattered when Pranati got penalties on both her vault attempts in the finals.
Her first vault gave her a huge score of 13.633 points (making her one of the top three medal contenders) even after 0.1 was deducted from her score.
However, it was the second vault that let her down as she fumbled with her landing earning her a 0.4-point deduction with a below-average score of 11.766. With the average of the two vaults calculated as the final score, Pranati’s points came down sharply and was placed fifth.
While vault was her best performance at the Commonwealth Games 2022, the other apparatus performance jilted her as she qualified at 25th place in the all-around rankings and was among the reserves in the finals..