Glasgow: Twenty year-old Sanjita Khumukcham and 19-year-old Saikhom Mirabai Chanu earned the first medals for India on the opening day of competition, at the 20th Commonwealth Games here on Thursday.
Sanjita won the gold while Mirabai grabbed silver in the women’s 48kg weightlifting, in a display of overwhelming domination in the event.
India grabbed their second gold of the day when Sukhen Dey won the men’s 56 kg weightlifting event. Ganesh Mali claimed the bronze in the same category. Dey won with a total lift of 248 kg and Mali recorded a total of 244 kg.
Sanjita won with a total lift of 173kg (77+96) while Mirabai recorded a cumulative effort of 170 (75+95) in the absence of other strong competitors. Nigerai’s Nkechi Opara was a distant third with 162 (70+92).
Sanjita’s total of 173kg missed the Games record, held the name of 2010 CWG gold winner Augustina Nkem Nwaokolo (175kg effort) by 2kg. Sanjita’s 77kg effort in snatch however equalled Nwaokolo’s Commonwealth Games record.
Easy for shuttlers
In badminton, India spanked minnows Ghana 5-0 in a Group B match of the mixed team event. Parupalli Kashyap started the proceeding, thrashing Daniel Sam 21-6, 21-16 in a 27-minute men’s singles match. P V Sindhu then taught Stella Amasah a lesson or two with a 21-7, 21-5 victory in the women’s singles. Men’s doubles pair of Akshay Dewalkar and Pranaav Chopra thrashed Emmanuel Donkor and Abraham Ayittey 21-7 21-11. Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Ponnappa took just 17 minutes to brush aside Evelyn Botwe and Diana Archer. Finally, P C Thulasi and Kidambi Srikanth paired up to beat Sam and Amasah 21-5, 21-9 in a mixed doubles match.
Women beat Canada
The women’s hockey team comfortably defeated Canada 4-2 in their opening group A match. Rani Rampaul opened the scoring in the 22nd minute followed by Poonam Rani in the 29th minute. Jaspreet Kaur scored twice with successful dragflicks in the 37th and 52nd minute respectively. For Canada, Brienne Stairs and Karli Johannsen were the scorers.
Judokas bag 3
In judo, Navjot Chana and Shushila Likmabam had to settle for silver medals, as they failed to clear the final hurdle in the men’s 60kg and women’s 48kg events, respectively.
There was also a bronze medal for Kalpana Thoudam who won on the basis of conceding lesser penalty points against Christianne Legentil of Mauritius.
In the men’s 60kg event, Chana lost to Ashley McKenzie of England in the final. The Indian lost on the basis of penalty points (shido).
Shushila had showed tremendous form en route to the final round by knocking out her rivals (M Medza Effa of Cameroon and A Meyer of Australia) on Ippon verdicts. She, however, was no match to Scotland’s Kimberly Renicks in the final.
Paddlers on a roll
Indian men and women’s table tennis teams made comfortable starts by defeating Vanuatu and Barbados, respectively. The women’s team blanked Barbados 3-0, courtesy a clinical performance by Shamini Kumaresan, Manika Batra and Madhurika Patkar.
Shamini got the better of Sherric Felix 11-3, 11-2, 11-3 before Manika made it 2-0 beating Anthonette Riley 11-2, 11-5, 11-2. Shamini and Madhurika won the doubles getting past Krystle Harvey and Riley 11-4, 11-4, 9-11, 11-3.
Against Vanuatu. Harmeet Desai beat Ham Lulu 11-2, 11-3, 11-5. Sanil Shetty then defeated Yoshua Shing 11-6, 11-2, 7-11, 11-1. Shetty and Anthony Amalraj paired up to beat Alan Lin and Shing 11-6, 11-5, 11-4.
Later in the day, the men saw off their second round opponents Northern Ireland 3-0, with Sharath Kamal and Soumyajit Ghosh convincingly winning their singles contests.