Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday hosted the Commonwealth Games-returned Indian athletes at his residence and hailed them for their memorable performance at the CWG 2022.
CWG 2022 got underway on July 28 with a spectacular opening ceremony. PV Sindhu and Manpreet Singh were named as the two Indian flagbearers for the event. Weightlifter Sanket Sargar won India’s first medal winner of the edition by clinching a silver in the men’s 55kg event. On the other hand, Mirabai Chanu was the first from his country to clinch gold.
The Indian women’s cricket team won a silver medal after the Harmanpreet Kaur-led side fell short in the gold medal match against Australia. The women’s hockey team won bronze after defeating New Zealand while the men’s hockey team won silver.
India wrapped up its Commonwealth Games 2022 campaign at fourth position with 61 medals (22 gold, 16 silver and 23 bronze). Wrestling topped the medal chart with 12 medals, including six gold while weightlifting accounted for 10 medals. India has delivered its fifth-best performance of all time in their Commonwealth Games history, with their best being a total of 101 medals when the games were held at home in 2010.
“I am happy that all of you have taken time out of your schedule to come to meet me at my residence as members of the family. I, just like all other Indians, feel proud to be talking to you. I welcome you all,” PM Modi said.
“This is just the beginning for our Yuva Shakti…the Golden age of Indian sports has just begun! In the past few weeks, nation recorded two major achievements in field of sports. Besides historic performance in CWG, for the first time country hosted Chess Olympiad,” he added.
“The country not only successfully hosted (Chess Olympiad) but continuing its rich tradition in Chess, gave its best performance. I also congratulate all players who participated and those who won medals at the Chess Olympiad,” PM said. Achieving 61 medals this time around holds a lot of significance since the shooting, which is India’s most successful discipline historically with 135 medals, was not included in the games this time. The numbers could have been way higher had it been included.
“Before commencement of #CommonwealthGames, I had told you & promised you in a way that when you come back we’ll celebrate ‘Vijayotsav’ together. I was confident that you’ll come back victorious, I had also thought of meeting you even if I would be busy & celebrate Vijayotsav,” said PM Modi during the interaction with the CWG 2022 Indian contingent. The Indian contingent also saw some first-time medals like in lawn bowls and cricket. Notably, the women’s cricket team was sent as a part of the contingent. India lost to Australia by a narrow margin of nine runs in a thrilling final.
“Compared to last time, this time we paved our way to victory in 4 new sports. There was an unprecedented performance-from Lawn Balls to Athletics. With this, the interest of youth in new sports will increase. We have to further improve our performance in these new sports,” he said.