Gold Coast, Apr 5: India started its Commonwealth Games 2018 campaign on a high note as Indian badminton team defeated Sri Lanka in a one-sided affair. India’s first medal followed soon after as weightlifter Gururaja Poojary won a silver medal in the 56 kg event. Malaysia’s Muhammad Azroy Hazalwafie Izhar Ahmad got gold with a record total of 261kg.
Gururaja failed in his first two attempts in the clean and jerk round, but he lifted 138 kg in his third. With a total of 249 kgs, he clinched the silver medal.
In Badminton, star player Saina Nehwal defeated Sri Lanka’s Madushika Dilrukshi Beruwelage 21-8, 21-4 to enhance India’s lead to 4-0. India had already won the match when its doubles players defeated the Sri Lankan duo as it took an unassailable lead of 3-0. India’s Satwiksairaj Rankireddy-Chirag Shetty dismissed the Sri Lankan challenge of Dinuka Karunaratna and Buwaneka Goonethilleka 21-17, 21-14.
Before the doubles, Indian men’s badminton star Kidambi Srikanth decimated Sri Lanka’s Niluka Karunaratne 21-16, 21-10 in the men’s singles tie. This was after India’s mixed double team of Ruthvika Gadde Shivani and Pranaav Jerry Chopra had defeated their Sri Lankan opponents.
India’s badminton team is its biggest medal hope as it has several stars including Saina Nehwal and Kidambi Srikanth who have been consistently defeating the bigwigs of the game.